Remarks by Secretary Wilbur L. Ross at the 2019 AAPI Summit

Introduced by Henry Childs, National Director of the Commerce Department’s Minority Business Development Agency

Thank you, Henry, for that kind introduction, and for your hard work and dedication to the economic development of America’s minority communities.

Welcome, everyone, to the 2019 National AAPI Business Summit. It is great to see such a large turnout.

Yesterday, I had the privilege of joining President Trump in the Oval Office for the signing ceremony of the Executive Order on the Economic Empowerment of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. I was especially gratified by the ceremony because in my former private-equity firm, we had Chinese Americans, Korean Americans, Japanese Americans, and Indian Americans in executive positions.

And my first Chief of Staff at Commerce was a Japanese American woman, the first ever for a Cabinet Secretary. So, I personally understand the outstanding qualities of your community.

The Executive Order signed by the President establishes the President’s Advisory Council on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, as well as the White House Initiative on A-A-P-I. The Advisory Council will be established here at the Commerce Department, and I look forward to being a co-chair with Elaine Chao, our esteemed Secretary of Transportation.

Our joint intention is to do exactly as the President’s Executive Order states — that is, to develop, monitor, and coordinate all of the government’s efforts to empower the growth of this dynamic segment of our population and business community.

We will develop strategies to increase participation of AAPI enterprises in partnerships between the public and private sectors. We will train a new generation of skilled workers who are in demand throughout every industry sector. And we will conduct an analysis of the United States Pacific Island territories to help them diversify and grow their economies.

Stay tuned: We will soon be issuing a notice seeking private-sector members of this Commission.

Holly Ham, the Executive Director of the White House AAPI Initiative, will be closing our Summit today, and we are honored to have her here.

Today, there are 23.8 million Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who call the United States their home. The number of AAPI residents will soon eclipse 25 million, and will grow to more than 40 million over the next three decades. Asia accounts for six of the 10 largest countries for American immigrants. Of the 22.2 million Americans of direct Asian descent, 12.6 million — or more than half — were born in their home countries. And, according to the Commerce Department’s Census Bureau — which loves to count everything — Asian Americans drive 6,487,806 vehicles.

Among the Asian Americans in the workforce, 53.5 percent are employed in occupations involving management, business, science and the arts. But only 62.5 percent of Asian Americans of working age are in the workforce; though that number is much higher for Pacific Islanders, whose workforce participation rate is 68.5 percent.

Increasing the workforce participation rate is a challenge we face across our entire economy, and we will be addressing it with the new Commission, as well as with the National Council for the American Worker, which I co-chair with Ivanka Trump.

Of the 1.1 million minority-owned firms with paid employees, more than half, or 560,000 are owned by Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. This entrepreneurial drive is essential for the continued dynamism and success of American capitalism.

The Commerce Department is helping AAPI-owned companies succeed here in the United States and in every major market abroad. We have Manufacturing Extension Partnership centers assisting manufacturers in every state. We have U.S. Export Assistance Centers located in 106 American cities, staffed by export specialists helping companies penetrate new markets.

The Commerce Department also runs the Foreign Commercial Service, with offices in 119 foreign cities, and 78 countries. In China alone, we have outposts in six major cities, along with one in Hong Kong, employing 120 professionals working with American companies to break down barriers to our products.

These diplomats have one primary task: To increase commercial opportunities in foreign markets for American companies. These markets are home to billions of consumers ready and willing to buy the great products made by AAPI-owned firms.

Please, utilize these resources: mostly they are free, so it’s a pretty good bargain.

But the United States is committed to free, fair, and reciprocal trade and is working to open markets across the globe to your products and services.

The most recent “Foreign Trade Barriers” report, from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, lists an astounding 517 pages of trade barriers erected by various countries against American exporters.

However, the Trump Administration has finally, and firmly, told our trading partners that we will no longer allow them brazenly to break the global rules of trade, discourage U.S. imports, and flood our open markets with government-subsidized products. Our trade policy toward China, for example, is not about a clash of civilizations.

It is a matter of fair versus unfair.

It is about addressing mercantilism, and fulfilling the promise President Trump made in his campaign to put America First.

Our trade dispute with China is also about making sure that our companies’ most precious assets — namely, your intellectual property — is not stolen through cyber attacks, forced technology transfers, or state-sponsored industrial espionage.

We do not want to see one American company have to fight the scourge of reverse-engineered, mass-produced counterfeits that are replicas of the real products. We want to ensure that you have affective rights to pursue administrative, civil, and criminal enforcement remedies to protect your IP in foreign markets.

Virtually every important U.S. industry is being targeted: From software, to pharmaceuticals, telecom, electronics, robotics, advanced materials, electric vehicles, processed foods, and every category of consumer goods. Worse yet, fakes and counterfeits are now exploding onto e-commerce marketplaces, making it even harder to enforce our laws and eliminate bad actors. For decades, the U.S. government allowed these illegal foreign trade practices to flourish.

Now, we are confronting them and insisting that they be addressed. And while a period of confrontation is always uncomfortable, in the end, everyone is better off.

China announced yesterday that they were imposing retaliatory duties on the remainder of our exports to them. They had already assessed retaliatory duties on something like 90 percent of their American imports.

But, in view of the fact that we have raised tariffs on more than $500 billion in imports from China, this was a relatively restrained response.

Because we export so little to China compared to what we import from them, the impact of the Chinese tariffs is a very small fraction of 1 percent of our total $18 trillion economy. Rest assured, that our current trade issues with China or other countries in the region will not spill over into attitudes regarding the AAPI community.

While we are addressing these trade practices with China, we are also currently engaged with Japan in developing a trade agreement. And we have concluded successful renegotiations of the Korea Free Trade Agreement and transformed NAFTA into the United States Mexico Canada Agreement.

Our administration has also broadened our strategic engagement with Asia to include the entire Indo-Pacific region.

Last week, I was in New Delhi meeting with Indian Prime Minister Modi, along with his Finance and Commerce Ministers, and with more than 100 U.S. companies wanting to gain a foothold in the massive Indian market place.

We are committed to opening these markets, to breaking down barriers, and insisting on fairness in our trading relations.

And we believe our efforts will pay off.

Through changes in our tax code, and our approach to smarter regulations — along with a dedication to training the next generation of skilled workers — we have put in place the conditions needed to make the United States the best place in the world to produce goods and services.

We have experienced extremely positive economic results from these efforts, and we are proud of what we have accomplished so far.

We hope that you can take advantage of the opportunities in our growing economy, and that you will utilize the services offered by the Commerce Department to expand into foreign markets.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to be here with us, and we at the Commerce Department look forward to serving your needs in any way possible.

Job creation smashes expectations, unemployment rate falls to 49-year low

The United States economy continued to thrive in April, with the unemployment rate dropping to 3.6 percent—the lowest unemployment rate since December 1969, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) household survey. April also marks the 14th consecutive month of the unemployment rate being at or below 4 percent.

The rapidly growing economy continues to benefit a wide range of demographic groups. The unemployment rate for adult women (20+) reached 3.1 percent in April, its lowest rate since 1953. The unemployment rate for Hispanics fell to 4.2 percent—the lowest rate since the series began in 1973. The unemployment rate for individuals with only a high school degree fell to 3.5 percent—matching the lowest rate since 2000. The unemployment rate for those with a disability fell to 6.3 percent in April—the lowest rate since the series began in 2008. Additionally, the unemployment rate for veterans fell to 2.3 percent—the lowest rate since the series began in 2000.

The U-6 unemployment rate, a broader measure of unemployment that includes those who are unemployed, marginally attached to the labor force, and working part-time for economic reasons, remained at 7.3 percent in April, matching the lowest U-6 rate since December 2000.

A separate survey from BLS, the Employment Situation Report, showed total nonfarm payroll employment in April rose by 263,000 jobs, far surpassing market expectations (190,000). In total, the economy has added over 5.8 million jobs since President Donald J. Trump was elected. The month of April continued the longest streak of growth on record.

Employment gains have exceeded 100,000 jobs in 27 of the 29 months since the 2016 election. Including revisions for the months of February and March, the average pace of job growth has been a healthy 218,000 jobs per month over the past year and 205,000 jobs per month so far in 2019. Job gains were predominantly concentrated in professional and business services (76,000 new jobs), education and health services (62,000 new jobs), and leisure and hospitality (34,000 new jobs). The construction sector added 33,000 new jobs in April, and has added 669,000 jobs since the 2016 election.

On top of the good news about job growth, the report indicates that wages are rising, too. Nominal average hourly earnings in April rose by 3.2 percent over the past 12 months, marking the 9th straight month that year-over-year wage gains were at or above 3 percent. Prior to 2018, nominal average hourly wage gains had not reached 3 percent since April 2009. Taking inflation into account, there is more evidence that real wages are also growing. Based on the most recent Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) price index data from March, inflation in the past year was 1.5 percent, and, based on the most recent Consumer Price Index (CPI-U) price data from March, inflation in the past year was 1.9 percent. This offers evidence that real wages are rising, and people are able to purchase more goods and services with their larger paychecks.

These most recent BLS surveys depict a strong American economy. Employment growth in April surpassed expectations with 263,000 new jobs, while the unemployment rate of 3.6 percent is the lowest rate in nearly half a century. With continued positive job growth, sustained low unemployment, and rising real wages, the economy continues to thrive.

Upcoming: 2018 Miss Asia International Pageant Final – Los Angeles

Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles
506 S. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90071
December 8, 2018.
3:00PM – 7:00PM

2018 Miss Asian International Pageant

2018 Miss Asian International Pageant USA Final sponsored by the American International Chamber of Commerce will be held at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles at 1:30PM on December 8, 2018.

Entering the Miss Asia International Beauty Pageant can be a very fun and fulfilling experience. This year’s contestants will compete for an amazing array of prizes, including photo shoot packages, scholarships, opportunites in the entertainment industry in modeling and acting, and the prestige of a year-long reign as the title holder of the premier pageants.

In addition to the prizes, contestants will receive various benefits from the sponsors as well as a myriad of opportunities to attend high profile red carpet events in Los Angels, New York, and China, fashions shows, and fundraisers in support of noble charitable organizations. Each contestant will represent their ancestral country in order to promote their culture, tourism and strengthen our bonds though a unity of diversity.

Tickets and RSVP
Phone: 626-675-4918
Miss Asia International Pageant Committee Los Angeles

AICC Madagascar branch and the Madagascar Youth for Development Association held a joint meeting.

September 30, 2017, the AICC, American International Chamber of Commerce Madagascar branch and the Madagascar Youth for Development Association held a joint meeting.

“Malagasy Youth for Development Y4D” is an association which regroup malagasy young people in Madagascar island. The association has its representant in 22 regions of Madagascar and has thousands of members.


According to Y4D member boards in national and regional levels, they have decided to have partnership with the American International Chambre of Commerce branch of Madagascar. They have asked Mr José RAMAHERISON to be the Honor President of the Malagasy youth for Development association.

The AICC Madagascar is helping Malagasy youth. The development comes from youth, So the reason why AICC Madagascar gave an office, a meeting room and materials and furnitures to Malagasy Y4D association.

THE WORLD’S LARGEST BUSINESS AVIATION EVENT – 2016 NBAA-BACE

Orlando, Nov 1st,  Join 27,000 industry professionals for the most important three days of business aviation today. Ranked as the sixth largest trade show in the United States, the Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) held on Nov. 1–3, 2016, in Orlando, Florida, bringing together current and prospective aircraft owners, manufacturers and customers into one meeting place to get critical work accomplished.

NBAA’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) is the year’s most significant media event for the business aviation industry. This event brings together business leaders, government officials, manufacturers, corporate aviation department personnel and all manner of people involved in nearly all aspects of business aviation.

Roughly 27,000 business aviation industry professionals are expected to converge on Orlando, FL Nov. 1-3 for NBAA’s 2016 Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE). For the Orlando area, whose economy depends heavily on travel and tourism, including a booming convention business, NBAA-BACE is a major contributor to the area’s economy.

Ranked as one of the largest trade show in the United States, NBAA-BACE brings together current and prospective aircraft owners, manufacturers and customers into one meeting place to survey the latest aviation product offerings, network with peers and accomplish critical work.

According to the Orlando County Convention Center (OCCC), the show will have an estimated overall economic impact on the area of $51.2 million. NBAA attendees will utilize 46,100 total hotel room nights, with 10,000 nights booked during the peak period, according to OCCC.

“The Orange County Convention Center is honored to host the prestigious NBAA conference,” said OCCC Executive Director Kathie Canning. “We have enjoyed an outstanding relationship with NBAA and are excited to continue to provide their leadership, exhibitors and attendees with all of the amenities that our convention center and community have to offer.”

NBAA last held the convention in Orlando in 2014, and the show is scheduled to return to Orlando in 2018. NBAA-BACE feature more than 1,100 exhibits and two static aircraft displays, as well as more 50 educational seminars.

Making Global Goals Local Business – Dubai

The UN Global Compact will bring together leaders across sectors to explore the transformative platforms and partnerships needed to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on the ground. In Dubai, over 600 participants from business, civil society, government, the UN and Global Compact Local Networks will focus on moving from awareness to action, showing that companies that do business responsibly and find opportunities to innovate around the SDGs will be the market leaders of tomorrow.

24-25 Oct, 2016
Annual Local Network Forum
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah
Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

24-25 Oct, 2016
UN Private Sector Focal Points Network Annual Meeting
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah
Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

25 Oct, 2016
PRME Business for Peace Forum 2016
American University of Sharjah
United Arab Emirates

26 Oct, 2016
Business for Peace Annual Event
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah
Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

27 Oct, 2016
Pearl Initiative & United Nations Global Compact 2nd Regional Forum
Conrad Hotel
Sheikh Zayed Road
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

While in Dubai participants may also be interested in the UNEP-FI Global Roundtable 2016 which will be held on 25-26 October. Learn more.

Making Global Goals Local Business – Dubai

Oct 24 – 27, 2016
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

The UN Global Compact invites you to Dubai for a series of events as part of our Making Global Goals Local Business campaign, where we will bring together leaders across sectors to explore the transformative platforms and partnerships needed to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on the ground. In Dubai, over 600 participants from business, civil society, government, the UN and Global Compact Local Networks will focus on moving from awareness to action, showing that companies that do business responsibly and find opportunities to innovate around the SDGs will be the market leaders of tomorrow.

Oct 24-25, 2016
Annual Local Network Forum
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah | Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Oct 24-25, 2016
UN Private Sector Focal Points Network Annual Meeting
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah | Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Oct 25, 2016
PRME Business for Peace Forum 2016
American University of Sharjah | United Arab Emirates

Oct 26, 2016
Business for Peace Annual Event
Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Madinat Jumeirah | Al Sufouh Rd
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Oct 27,2016
Pearl Initiative & United Nations Global Compact 2nd Regional Forum
Conrad Hotel
Sheikh Zayed Road
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Contact
AICC UN Global Compact Office: ungc@aiccus.org