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From Site Selection magazine, May 2019

Let the Summiteering Begin

The latest FDI numbers show reason for optimism in the United States.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce

Switzerland’s Ruag Space has U.S. business locations in three states where major workspace is devoted to space work: Florida, Colorado and Alabama. U.S. Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein Ronald McMullen recently paid a call on Ruag in Emmen, Switzerland, as part of a tour of Swiss companies with investments in the United States. In March he gave a speech at the University of Zurich’s Europa Institute in the room where Winston Churchill once spoke in 1945.

“In fact, one of his great quotes has helped established a certain credo I have lived by,” McMullen told the audience. “Churchill was known to say, ‘For myself, I am an optimist — it does not seem much use being anything else.’ ”

His speech focused on U.S. pro-growth policies, and their domestic, international, and bilateral impact, as well as on Swiss-U.S. economic ties.

“From decades of experience in the private sector, I’ve come to learn that you need the right people in the room to get deals done.”
— Wilbur Ross, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, on the convening power of the annual SelectUSA Investment Summit

“The United States and Switzerland are currently two of the most vibrant and innovative economies in the world,” he said. “Avoiding needless over-regulation that constrains rather than enables economic growth is a priority. Switzerland is our top research and development partner world-wide, as both our nations know that today’s research is tomorrow’s innovative application leading to continued economic prosperity, whether in artificial intelligence or in other exciting areas. Switzerland as a developed and prosperous nation shares our commitment to cyber and intellectual property safe-guards, and the U.S. will continue that partnership. Investing in the future, which includes both physical infrastructure improvements, and development of our workforce talent, are domestic priorities we share and where the United States can benefit from Swiss experiences.”

Meanwhile, the U.S. benefits from Swiss capital.

“You know the numbers,” McMullen told his listeners in Zurich. “Switzerland is the seventh-largest source of foreign direct investment in the United States, with a cumulative direct investment in the U.S. of $202 billion. Switzerland’s direct investment in the U.S. is led by manufacturing, finance and insurance, and wholesale trade. Swiss affiliates directly support half a million jobs in the United States. And this is a reciprocal relationship; U.S. FDI in Switzerland is $250 billion, led by manufacturing, nonbank holding companies, and finance and insurance.”

Switzerland is just one example of a country whose private-sector investments are encouraged by SelectUSA, the investment attraction arm of the U.S. Commerce Department that has facilitated $4.2 billion of FDI representing more than 7,500 jobs in the United States since October 2018, including investments from more than 20 international markets in 17 states and territories.

“Through partnerships with programs like SelectUSA, we are eager to continue doing our part to drive technology leadership and economic growth in the United States.”
— David Steel, Executive VP of Corporate Affairs for SelectUSA sponsor Samsung Electronics America

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross will host the sixth annual SelectUSA Investment Summit June 10-12 at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C. The 2018 event attracted more than 3,000 total attendees, including investors from 66 international markets.

This year, for the first time, the Summit will feature programming targeted specifically for startup and technology companies interested in expanding in the United States, while speakers also address such important fields as advanced manufacturing, health care and biotechnology, agriculture and the digital economy.

Adam Bruns
Editor in Chief of Site Selection magazine

Adam Bruns

Adam Bruns is editor in chief and head of publications for Site Selection, and before that has served as managing editor beginning in February 2002. In the course of reporting hundreds of stories for Site Selection, Adam has visited companies and communities around the globe. A St. Louis native who grew up in the Kansas City suburbs, Adam is a 1986 alumnus of Knox College, and resided in Chicago; Midcoast Maine; Savannah, Georgia; and Lexington, Kentucky, before settling in the Greater Atlanta community of Peachtree Corners, where he lives with his wife and daughter.


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