The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando (HCCMO), along with the leadership of City of Orlando Commissioner Tony Ortiz and Osceola County Commissioner John "Q" Quiñones, embarked on a four day trade mission to Costa Rica with the goal to stimulate additional trade for our region, and the corresponding jobs that such trade activity supports between Central Florida and Costa Rica. "We discovered a world of opportunities for Central Florida that we began to explore the moment we arrived. Costa Ricans or "Ticos" are humble, hospitable people with a great disposition for vibrant businesses. Our Hispanic Chamber of Commerce organized and led a valuable and very successful trade mission which started producing results the minute we landed in Costa Rica," said City of Orlando
Commissioner Tony Ortiz. "Latin America represents numerous opportunities for our chamber businesses. We have begun to establish great partnerships with Costa Rica, and undoubtedly will be able to capitalize on these relationships to support the economic development of Central Florida...," said Diana Bolívar, president of the HCCMO. "This business trade mission to Costa Rica presented a great opportunity to strengthen international relationships and seek opportunities to diversify our regional economy," said Osceola County Commissioner John "Q" Quiñones.
Delegation members had an opportunity to meet with companies, executives and representatives from the manufacturing, agricultural, export, government, trade, technology, tourism, real estate, investment, construction, and professional services industries. During the four day long trade mission there were business meetings between members of the delegation and businesses from major economic regions of Costa Rica, including Puerto Caldera, Limón, and San José. In addition, there was a Doing Business with Central Florida Seminar that was attended by over 100 businesses and business professionals who were educated on the opportunities of the region. The HCCMO estimates a potential
economic impact to Central Florida of more than $50 million.
"The potential trade and tourism possibilities with Costa Rica offer great opportunity for central Florida," says Canaveral Port Authority Commission Chairman Tom Weinberg. "Importing Costa Rica's abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables through Port Canaveral and fostering tourism between the country and our region could produce strong economic opportunity and jobs."
"The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando has proven to be an invaluable partner for the Canaveral Port Authority, greatly enhancing our trade and tourism efforts in the South and Central American markets," said Jim Dubea, Deputy Executive Director of Government and Strategic artnerships.
"The HCCMO trade mission to San José, Costa Rica showed many key opportunities available to bring the Central Florida area closer to San José. It is always a pleasure to be involved with such an organized and productive initiative to bring not only companies together but also the travel trade audience who serves all these corporations we represent," said Jessica Banchs, Manager International Sales JetBlue Airways.
Traveling in this delegation were José Cerda, HCCMO Board Chair and State Farm Insurance Agent; Jessica Banchs, Manager of International Sales for JetBlue; Diana Bolívar, President of the HCCMO; Brian Brennan, President of Cartainer Ocean Line; Carolina Díaz Henao, Commercial Manager of Logistics for Altex Chartered Inc.; Jim Dubea, Deputy Executive Director for Canaveral Port Authority; Shannon Feeley, Assistant Director of Cargo Business Development for Canaveral Port Authority; Pedro Fernández, Attorney of Fernández Law P.A.; Maria Grulich, Director of International Development for Experience Kissimmee; Pedro A. Hilera, Tax Service Partner/ Share Holder of Vestal & Wiler; Brian Hubert, President of Ambassador Services Inc.; Henry Lim, Attorney of Lim & Associates, P.A.; Marilen Marnett Director of Events and Operations for the HCCMO; Tony Ortiz, City of Orlando Commissioner for District 2; Christine Peña, Events Coordinator for the HCCMO; David Poston, Director of Business Development, Cruise Tourism and Hospitality for Canaveral Port Authority; John "Q" Quiñones, Osceola County Commissioner for District 2; Albert Ruiz, Marketing Manager-Southeast Region for JetBlue; Javier Saborío, Logistics Manager for Altex Chartered Inc.; Camilo Soto, President/ CEO of PCNet; Michael Tessitore, Attorney for Tessitore Law Firm; and Zoraida Velasco, Special Assistant to Mayor Teresa Jacobs, Orange County Government. The HCCMO thanks JetBlue and Canaveral Port Authority for being the main
sponsors of this successful trade mission.
TheHispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide leadership and support the economic development of the Hispanic business community of Metro Orlando. For more information about the Hispanic Chamber and the Trade Mission to Costa Rica please contact Diana Bolívar at 407-428-5870 or visit www.hispanicchamber.net.