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Monday, 27 June 2016 20:35

Auto Care Association Hosts Successful Trade Mission to Guatemala

The Auto Care Association hosted a trade mission to Guatemala on June 21-22, the second in a series of trade missions organized as part of the Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) award from the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The association received the award to help the automotive industry increase exports to free trade agreement partners in Latin America.

Trade mission delegates participated in a full day of personalized business-to-business matchmaking meetings with local industry executives, pre-screened to match each company’s specific business objectives. Activities also included a country briefing presented by the U.S. Embassy, the American Chamber of Commerce in Guatemala, and a local law firm. The trade mission ended with a networking dinner attended by local industry executives.

According to the Auto Care Association, under the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), 100 percent of U.S. consumer and industrial goods exports to Guatemala and other CAFTA countries enter duty-free. The CAFTA region was the 14th largest U.S. export market in the world in 2014, and the third largest in Latin America behind Mexico and Brazil. Guatemala and its CAFTA neighbors have been growing in aging vehicle populations that require continuous maintenance and replacement services, so demand levels are expected to increase for years to come.

“We would like to extend our thanks to the Auto Care Association for setting up the trade mission to Guatemala," said Jorge Amaya, delegate from Herko Automotive Group, an Auto Care Association member. "Our experience during this event has been of a positive outcome. Having the opportunity to meet with the leading companies in the automotive industry in Guatemala has opened a wide range of business venues we were long due to achieve. We would like to support this program and hopefully participate on the upcoming missions to other countries scheduled for the future, and encourage all the companies in the auto care industry to participate in these trade missions.”

“The Auto Care Association and the U.S. Commercial Service did a magnificent job of setting up productive meetings with local businesses which are eagerly ready to create business relationships with our U.S. organization,” said Daniel Moroles, sales and market development manager, Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, Inc.

“I am thrilled to learn that all of the participants expect to acquire new business as a result of participating in this mission,” said Bill Hanvey, president and CEO, Auto Care Association. “This further confirms our belief that Central America has tremendous export, business development and job creation opportunities for our members. We look forward to working with the Department of Commerce, and other partners on future successful missions.”

For more information, visit www.autocare.org/trade-missions.

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