Monday, January 21, 2019
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The Monterey Bay International Trade Association (MBITA), manager of ..........One of the longest standing non-profit global trade websites on the Web established in 1995.....Click HERE to see MBITA/TradePort events..........

MBITA and The Far Eastern Center for Economic Development

The Partners

MBITA is a non-profit international trade association dedicated to providing trade promotion services in California and foreign business communities since 1985. MBITA's core client base includes specialty agriculture products, agri-technology, and Information and Communications Technology.

In 1995 MBITA was a founding member in the unprecedented public-private export promotion program called BAYTRADE . The late Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown initiated BAYTRADE as a model under the National Export Strategy. From 1995 to 2000 the BAYTRADE program received a grant for $6.5 million from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) of the US Department of Commerce (USDOC) that helped generate $339 million in new-to-market U.S. exports. This effort supported over 6,647 jobs in 17 northern California counties encompassing the Greater Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose, Monterey Bay and Sacramento areas.


The late and former Secretary of Commerce, Ron Brown meets with the founding partners of BAYTRADE

Currently, MBITA is a public-private organization and a founding member of the CALTRADE network. CALTRADE represents over 10,000 qualified import/export SMEs in California. In addition, MBITA has been the private-sector partner of the Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) of the U.S. Department of Commerce for the Monterey Bay region of California since 1995.

FECED began operations in April of 1996. Its founding institutions include the Administrative Committee of the Nakhodka Free Economic Zone, the Far Eastern State University, and the International Research and Exchange Board (IREX). The goal of FECED activity is to promote an efficient economic policy in the Russian Far East, to encourage mutually profitable cooperation with Asia-Pacific nations, and develop domestic and foreign business in the region.

FECED is a non-government, non-commercial organization, and is one of the Local Russian Partners (LRP) for the Entrepreneurial Business Service Program-Siberia & Far East (EBS-SFE). FECED is a partner of the Ad Hoc Working Group (AHWG) in Seattle, Washington, originally guided by the Gore-Chernomyrdin commission to promote trade between the RFE and the U.S. West Coast. FECED is well known in the region as an organization that provides consulting and analytical services. It has created and hosts the "Partner Regions: Russian Far East - US West Coast" web site , supporting trade relations between the two nations. FECED has published the economics-related journal The Russian Far East: Economics, Investments, Markets. The Eurasia Foundation, the Open Society Institute, the Netherlands Consulate in Russia, and ACDI/VOCA supported these projects, as well as many others. The sources of FECED financing are founders' contributions, sponsorship donations, grants, and service fees.

The Partnership History

The Russian Market Outreach Program began with a partnership established in November 2000 between the Monterey Bay International Trade Association (MBITA) and the Far Eastern Center for Economic Development (FECED) in Vladivostok, Russia.

The history of the MBITA/FECED partnership began when Tony Livoti, Executive Director of MBITA, gave a presentation on Global eCommerce and its applications at the Ad Hoc Working Group (AHWG) summer conference in June of 2000 in Monterey, California. Tony met Dr. Alexandr Abramov, the FECED Director, at this presentation. Dr. Abramov then invited Tony to make a similar presentation to an SME conference in Vladivostok.

In November of 2000, Tony - funded by a WinRock Foundation grant - spent 17 days at the FECED facility in Vladivostok, Russia. FECED arranged thirteen meetings on the benefits of Global eCommerce with city and regional government officials, successful Russian Far East trading companies, freight forwarders, custom brokers, educators, software developers, ISP's and trade associations. MBITA's Global eCommerce vision was also presented to more than 25 SMEs at the former Governor's palace.

Tony and Alexandr meet with Mr. V. Stegniy, Vice Governor of the Primorsky Krai region in the RFE.

After this visit and Tony's subsequent report on his grant completion to the WinRock Foundation, a partnership agreement was formed between MBITA and FECED. A program called the Russian Market Outreach was initiated with its first project being the development of the Global Trade eCommerce Portal (GTEP).

In March 2002, Tony - funded by an ACDI/VOCA grant - again visited Vladivostok to plan the continued development of GTEP. During this visit, Tony and Dr. Alexandr Abramov collaborated on a grant application to the Foundation for Russian American Econonmic Cooperation (FRAEC) to fund the development of GTEP. In addition, Tony continued to develop MBITA's working relationships with many of the Russian public and private sector entities. Tony met with Victor Gorchakov, Head of Department for the Department of International Cooperation Regional Development and Investment for the Primorsky Territory Government, and with Yuriy A. Syasin, Director of Economy of Branches and Municipality Division for the Primorsky Territory Administration.

MBITA has emphasized the educational aspects of Global eCommerce and worked to develop a range of eLearning courses targeted for working SMEs. Tony also met with Dr. Vladimir Kurilov, President of the Far Eastern National University in Vladivostok, who expressed an interest in integrating this coursework into FENU's eCommerce curriculum. Tony hopes to leverage this interest with MBITA's established relationship with the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley and it's St. Petersburg School of Business program at St. Petersburg University in Russia.

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