Exploring Business Expansion Through International Trade Mission to Africa

Posted by: Economic Development Team on Thursday, December 19, 2019

The Economic Development Department (EDD) is searching for local companies who want to explore new business opportunities overseas and join an international trade mission to Africa.  In Spring 2020, the EDD leadership team and key stakeholders will travel to Mozambique with a delegation of Charles County businesspeople to engage with counterparts in that country, initiate relationships, and establish trading partnerships as part of a long-term business expansion strategy.  

There’s even money to help cover businesses’ costs through the Maryland Department of Commerce’s ExportMD program.

Why Mozambique?
The country of Mozambique is strategically located on the Southeastern Africa coast, with its ports giving easy access to regional and international markets. Rich in natural resources, the country has seen a major inflow of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in goods such as aluminum, natural gas, titanium, and coal from countries like the United States, Belgium, UK, China, India, South Africa, and other developed and emerging economies. Key industry sectors include manufacturing, construction, energy and extractives, and agriculture.  This trade mission will travel to the city of Matola, the industrial center of Mozambique, located in the national capital region of Maputo.

Apply for a Grant by January 8.
The Maryland Department of Commerce supports this initiative through a grant for eligible companies.  They pay up to $5,000 in reimbursement for expenses associated with an international marketing project, but applications must be submitted by January 8, 2020.  EDD staff would be happy to assist in this process.  Details on the ExportMD program are at https://commerce.maryland.gov/fund/programs-for-businesses/exportmd-program .

Supporting International Trade Is Important to Charles County Leadership.
Earlier this year, the EDD held an International Trade seminar to introduce local businesses to the opportunities and resources that go with importing, exporting, and doing business overseas.  Soon thereafter, Charles County Commissioner President Reuben Collins, EDD Director Darréll Brown, and EDD Chief of Business Development Lucretia Freeman-Buster visited the Mozambique Embassy in Washington DC to begin exploring an international partnership. 

This trade mission to Mozambique is the next step in building an international trade program, and – hopefully – it’s the first of many Charles County trade missions to Africa and other international destinations.  Helping our local companies expand their markets through international trade is on the Board of Charles County Commissioners’ goals and objectives, and it’s in sync with the EDD’s strategic plan.

If you are interested in leveraging this opportunity to grow your business through international trade, contact Lucretia Freeman-Buster, Chief of Business Development, at 301-885-1340 or at BusterL@MeetCharlesCounty.com.

Photo: At the Republic of Mozambique Embassy in Washington DC, Charles County EDD Director Darréll A. Brown and Chief of Development Lucretia Freeman-Buster, Commissioner President Reuben B. Collins, Ambassador Carlos dos Santos & Commercial Counselor Godinho Alves.

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