By Chris Lester, senior vice-president, business growth of Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce
KANSAS CITY- Four of the Kansas City region’s leading business organizations, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the International Trade Council of Greater Kansas City, the Kansas City Area Development Council and KC SmartPort, are forming a strategic partnership to develop WTC Kansas City at Union Station. The WTC will be housed within the Chamber’s new offices at Union Station, an iconic facility where all four collaborating organizations will be located.
Union Station also will serve as the venue for the partnership’s first formal event, the WTCA North America Regional Meeting May 16-17, where executives from nearly 60 North American WTCs are invited to gather for their annual planning meeting.
Several other programs involving WTC Kansas City’s partners include a recent session led by Fred Hochberg, president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, a trip to China in March for a delegation of more than 100 Chamber members, and support for the Futurallia global business matchmaking event coming to Kansas City in May.
According to a recent Brookings Institution report entitled Export Nation, in 2008, the Kansas City metropolitan area exported $8.4 billion in goods and services, representing 9.1% of gross regional product.
WTC Kansas City’s services will include hosting trade missions and events, educating regional trade professionals and providing a variety of other services to help businesses large and small develop new trade relationships. The goal is to drive regional growth and create jobs tied to those international relationships over time.
For more details on WTC Kansas City and the Union Station project, visit http://kcchamber.wordpress.com/2011/03/04/the-chamber-enters-strategic-partnership-focused-on-world-trade/.
Kansas City Union Station’s new location