2019 California Mexico Trade Mission

October 2019 California Delegation to Mexico City Led by Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis

Day 4

Friday, October 4 – Final Government Meetings and Departure

Modern Art Staircase

Modern art staircase in the Mexican Ministry of Economy.

The last day of the mission began with a meeting at Mexico’s Ministry of Economy with Graciela Márquez Colín, Secretary of the Economy, who welcomed the delegation and spoke of shared values.

The Secretary indicated the top three trading partners for Mexico are the United States, China and California. Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis, the first woman to serve as California’s Lieutenant Governor, pointed out that the Secretary is the first woman to hold that position. The brief introduction was followed by the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between California and Mexico.

Joining the delegation was Nicole DeSilvis Prada, Counselor for Commercial Affairs at the U.S. Embassy.

California and Mexico Ratify Agreement to Expand Relations in Trade, Investment, Energy, and Environmental Policy
Office of Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis, October 4, 2019

Graciela Márquez Colín, Mexico's Secretary of Economy

Graciela Márquez Colín, Mexico’s Secretary of Economy

The signing ceremony was followed by a presentation on Mexico’s economic plan from Luz María de la Mora, Undersecretary of Foreign Trade, who said “we are stronger working together.” Sergio Silva, Director General of the Global Economic Intelligence Unit, discussed information sharing and creating the “Data Mexico” plan to assist Mexican businesses. Barbara Mungaray, Head of Productive Development, discussed the effort to assist micro, small and medium-sized businesses in Mexico. Nestor Galvin, Deputy Director General for Information Services, discussed the software industry and how it can assist with industrial innovation. Bud Colligan from GO-Biz then concluded discussion of the integration of Mexico and California.

 

Graciela Márquez Colín, Mexico's Secretary of Economy, and Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis sign an MO

Graciela Márquez Colín (left), Mexico’s Secretary of Economy, and Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis sign an MOU.

Panel at the Mexican Ministry of Economy

Panel at the Mexican Ministry of Economy.

The delegation received box lunches and visited Constitution Square, also called the Zocalo.

Mexico City's Zocalo

Mexico City’s Zocalo at the Plaza de la Constitución.

Poster inside the Mexican Ministry of Agriculture office.

Poster inside the Mexican Ministry of Agriculture office.

Following lunch, the delegation visited the Ministry of Agriculture (SADER) to meet with Agricultural Secretary Victor Villalobos Arambula. Lt. Governor Kounalakis and Secretary Villalobos both spoke, as did Karen Ross, California’s Secretary of the Department of Food and Agriculture.

The delegation was joined by Rhiannon Elms, Agricultural Attaché at the U.S. Embassy.

Secretary Ross listed issues of concern and potential future joint efforts, including: organic production, food safety, health issues, climate change adaptation, the circular economy, international trade, capacity building and clean energy/renewable resources. The Secretary went on to discuss future opportunities in agricultural education and leadership.

The group then signed an MOU focused on cross-border agricultural efforts.

California and Mexico Ratify Agreement on Sustainable Agriculture
Office of Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis, October 4, 2019

California Department of Food and Agriculture Secretary Karen Ross signs an MOU along with Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis and Mexico Agricultural Secretary Victor Villalobos Arambula.

(From left) California Department of Food and Agriculture Secretary Karen Ross signs an MOU along with Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis and Mexico Agricultural Secretary Victor Villalobos Arambula.

This was the final stop of the mission to Mexico City and many delegates had flights to catch.

CalChamber participants in the mission to Mexico: Susanne Stirling (left), VP International Affairs, and Nikki Ellis, International Affairs Assistant.

CalChamber participants in the mission to Mexico: Susanne Stirling (left), VP International Affairs, and Nikki Ellis, International Affairs Assistant.

Thanks

Our hosts in Mexico were most informative and gracious, allowing our group to see many different sides of Mexico. The delegation will take back a number of experiences from the past several days in Mexico, and looks forward to developing new networks that will advance our state’s connection to the bilateral relationship with Mexico.

The Lieutenant Governor with her vast ambassadorial experience was a polished and experienced delegation leader of this first international delegation of the Newson administration.

A special thanks to my assistant, Nikki Ellis, who provided the research for the blog, accompanied the delegation on the mission, and was extremely helpful in the advance planning and logistics. And thanks to Larry Dicke, CalChamber Executive Vice President/CFO and Treasurer for our Foundation, who is always appropriately diligent with our finances. My continued appreciation goes to our CalChamber Communications Department staff, who always are willing to assist in promoting international trade and investment.

And thanks to the whole Mexico staff team! The GO-Biz staff took the lead and was key to a successful mission.

 

Max Oltersdorf, Deputy Director for International Affairs and Trade, GO-Biz; Evan Reade, International Affairs Advisor, Office of Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis; Emily Desai, Special Advisor for International Affairs and Investment, GO-Biz; Maria Onorato, International Analyst, GO-Biz; Nikki Ellis, International Affairs Assistant, CalChamber; Diana Dominguez, Special Advisor for International Affairs and Trade, GO-Biz; and Bud Colligan, Senior Advisor for International Affairs, GO-Biz)

Max Oltersdorf, Deputy Director for International Affairs and Trade, GO-Biz; Evan Reade, International Affairs Advisor, Office of Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis; Emily Desai, Special Advisor for International Affairs and Investment, GO-Biz; Maria Onorato, International Analyst, GO-Biz; Nikki Ellis, International Affairs Assistant, CalChamber; Diana Dominguez, Special Advisor for International Affairs and Trade, GO-Biz; and Bud Colligan, Senior Advisor for International Affairs, GO-Biz.) Not pictured: Panorea Avdis, Chief of Staff, Office of Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis.