GOAL 6
Increase Global Connectedness

If L.A. County were a nation, it would be the 19th largest economy in the world.

By measure of GDP alone, L.A. County would be larger than Sweden, Argentina, Saudi Arabia and Belgium.

Attract and retain high quality foreign direct investment (FDI)

Conduct an FDI study for the region to get a true understanding of the impact of international investment to the Los Angeles regional economy, and obtain feedback from current foreign investors on how to retain and secure more investments from abroad

  • WTCLA conducted its second annual FDI study in June of 2017. The analyses not only counted the number of foreign-owned establishments (FOEs) present in Los Angeles County but also the associated number of jobs and value of wages allocated at the companies themselves. Moreover, the analysis ranked the top 25 countries by investment intensity and carried out a clustering analysis to find out the relationship between FOEs and whether they group themselves based on national identity or industry, with the latter reasoning being the conclusion. A survey was handed out to all 4,682 FOEs in LA County to discover how to retain present investments while also attracting more.

Conduct a “needs assessment” to identify the industries and companies the region should attract and work with private/public sector organizations to identify, target and recruit foreign companies

  • WTCLA works in tandem with LAEDC’s Strategic Initiatives to promulgate the attractiveness of specific industry clusters that LA firms share a comparative advantage compared to other locales. Additionally, WTCLA works closely with the Department of Commerce and their staff located in US Embassies across the world as the leading gate and expert for companies within their portfolios that have an interest in Los Angeles.

Encourage public/private partnerships to fund and execute region-wide FDI attraction programs

  • WTCLA experienced substantial monetary support for its various programs, including the Select LA Investment Summit, from private partners to enhance the organization’s reach and impact, providing free concierge trade services to foreign companies looking to establish in Los Angeles County.

Coordinate existing trade services in the region

Create a trade services collective with regional trade and investment assistance service organizations to pool resources, attract foreign firms, coordinate trade and investment services, and establish a centralized physical or virtual (web-based) location where these services could be accessed easily

  • WTCLA has been involved with the Milken Institute’s California Center working group to discover methods and processes that better enable local providers across the service value chain. WTCLA’s participation stems from its expertise in creating trade missions that allow exporters to access new markets. The working group is striving to understand what a centralized location for these services would look like, in addition to ownership.
  • WTCLA works closely with the Los Angeles Mayor’s Office of International Affairs to assist with foreign companies looking to expand outside the City of Los Angeles.

Educate more businesses about “how to export” and provide assistance services in an effort to increase the number of export-ready small, medium and large businesses

  • WTCLA acts as a conduit to introduce interested parties to established programs like ExporTech and Trade Connect. We facilitate the discovery of the programs and identify which curriculum matches the company’s current knowledge base. WTCLA has also created an introductory “how to export” toolkit that is available as a free download on its website

Integrate social and emotional development standards into early child development

Coordinate international trade mission and delegation system

Create a centralized intake and vetting system for international delegations visiting the L.A. region as a way of streamlining services offered by regional partners

  • WTCLA has created an intake portal for international delegations as well as foreign companies looking to visit and fully understand the LA County market and economy. This intake form provides a profile of the potential investors that streamlines WTCLA’s FDI services. With a system to save the records, WTCLA smoothly hands-off interested parties to companies or organizations that can maximize inquires and investment goals. In 2017, WTCLA handled 68 FDI consultations and delegations.

Coordinate recruitment of local companies for trade missions with regional partners across different sectors to increase export opportunities

  • WTLCA recruited 11 companies for three trade missions in 2017 to Beijing, Berlin and Guangzhou. The sectors included advanced transportation, cleantech, digital media, real estate, banking, eSports and law.

Establish Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) agreements with key consulates and foreign trade offices to help local businesses and trade organizations to identify potential business, industry and government partners abroad

  • WTCLA established four MOUs with the Seoul Metropolitan Government, Auckland, Hungary and the Canadian-Southern California business organization, MAPLE.