Archive for February, 2011

SBA Announces Grants Available for State Trade, Export Promotion

Release Date: Thursday, February 24, 2011
Release Number: 11-17
Contact: Dennis Byrne (202) 205-6567
Internet Address:

$90 Million Jobs Act Initiative Aimed at Increasing Small Business Exporting

WASHINGTON – Beginning March 1, states can apply for grants from the U.S. Small Business Administration to support efforts to increase exporting by small businesses. The State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) pilot grant initiative is authorized to provide up to $90 million in grants to states over the next three years.

The STEP pilot grant initiative is aimed at achieving two goals: 1) increase the number of small businesses that want to export and 2) increase the value of exports for those small businesses that currently export. Established by the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 the 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories are all eligible to apply for grants, which will be awarded on a competitive basis.

“The global market offers countless opportunities for small business owners who are well positioned to grow their volume and customer base beyond our borders, and in doing so, create good-paying jobs in their local communities,” SBA Administrator Karen Mills said. “These grants, through the partnerships they will create at the state level, will strengthen the support available to help small business take that first step to begin exporting, and for those who are already exporting, grow into additional markets.” Read More


February 28, 2011 at 8:16 am

NKITA Trade Education: Foreign Exchange Risk Management Strategies

Given the recent volatility in the Foreign Exchange markets and the increasing globalization of the worlds’ economies, currency movements can have a significant impact on a company’s performance. There are a variety of solutions to manage the impact of currency fluctuations to reduce the risk of adverse movements and maximize the benefit of favorable currency market trends. Tools include locking in forward contracts, purchasing options or entering into non-deliverable forwards in emerging market currencies.

During the seminar you will learn about:

  • Forecast on currency policies in the EURO zone and China;
  • Implications for our small businesses;
  • Tools and the strategies small businesses can use to minimize currency risk.



Toyota Motor Engineering and Manufacturing


Kerry B. Stealey, Managing Director, Foreign Exchange, PNC Bank

Ms. Stealey specializes in providing advisory and execution services in foreign currency risk management. She works closely with corporate clients to tailor foreign exchange management solutions. She has worked extensively will all types of currency risk management instruments, including forwards, options, and non-deliverable forwards. She conducts frequent seminars in foreign currency risk management and related topics.

Prior to joining PNC Capital Markets Ms. Stealey was a Vice President on the Foreign Exchange desk for National City Bank since 1996. She began her career in Boston as a financial planner after graduating from Ithaca College in New York. She moved to Los Angeles, California where she continued to work in the financial services industry until joining National City, now PNC in Cleveland, Ohio.

Ivan Drobnjak, Fifth Third Bank

Oiginally from Eastern Europe, Ivan was educated in the United States. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Berea College and an MBA in Finance from Miami University, graduating at the top of the class. Ivan has spent the nine years of professional experience with Fifth Third Bancorp, all of it working in some International function. For six years he was a Commercial Lender focused solely on taking care of European corporates, while the last two years he has narrowed down the focus to the world of Foreign Exchange.

Ivan now covers Kentucky, Southeast Ohio & West Virginia markets as a Foreign Exchange Advisor. His function is to listen and understand companies’ international needs & objectives and subsequently craft an optimal international strategy for the business. This strategy’s goal is to eliminate risk and maximize profit.

February 25, 2011 at 11:36 am

DHL Expands Its U.S. Hub at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport

$22.5 Million Expansion to Enhance International Services, Meet Growing Demand of Shipping Customers

PLANTATION, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–DHL, the world’s leading logistics company, announced today it will invest US $22.5 million to expand its hub facility at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky airport to meet the growing demands of international shipping customers.

Starting in March 2011, DHL will build on 19 acres of land leased from the CVG Airport authority to expand its existing aircraft parking apron and construct nine new aircraft gates. The expansion will enable parking for nine additional wide-body aircraft that will connect the United States to points in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

“As businesses increasingly go global to capitalize on emerging trends in international trade, the expansion at our CVG hub will position DHL to accommodate the growing needs of our importing and exporting customers,” said Ian Clough, CEO for DHL Express U.S.

All new aircraft gates will include a hydrant jet refueling system for a more efficient refueling operation as well as the capability to de-ice aircraft directly at the gate. Construction will continue through September 2011.

This is the second phase of a two year, $40 million investment to enhance DHL operations at the Cincinnati hub which includes equipment upgrades and various facility improvements. In October 2010, DHL announced a $12.5 million project to upgrade existing hardware and software applications running its auto sort system, improving the speed and reliability of shipment scanning and sorting as volumes grow at the Cincinnati hub. The CVG hub handles about 90% of the DHL volume that enters the U.S.

The investment also represents DHL’s continued commitment to the U.S., a key component of its powerful global network. In the past two years, DHL restructured its U.S. Express division, focusing on its core international shipping specialty and implementing an extensive Certified International Specialist training program to ensure all employees are experts in the intricacies of international trade and transportation. The company also added an entirely new selection of Time Definite import and export express services and flights to the U.S. from Paris and Frankfurt to further expand next-day service from key points in Western Europe. Read More

February 14, 2011 at 8:33 am

Behind Firm’s Default: Vietnam’s Growth Mania

HANOI—State-owned shipbuilder Vinashin’s default on a $600 million loan late last week is just the latest crisis challenging Communist-run Vietnam’s ability to get its economy under control after years of pell-mell growth and spiraling inflation.

The company, officially named Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group, failed to make a $60 million initial repayment on the syndicated loan to international lenders, saying it will make only interest payments, says a person familiar with the matter. The company has agreed to meet with creditors in mid-January to discuss repaying the loan, although some lenders privately have said they are uncertain whether Vinashin has sufficient resources to do so.

In defaulting on the debt, Vinashin has added to a catalog of problems afflicting Vietnam, once one of the world’s hottest emerging markets.

Over the past decade, the country’s economy has expanded from crater-pocked rice paddies to erect gleaming new factories and towering skyscrapers, prompting development economists to extol the country as a model for other frontier markets. On the narrow streets of Hanoi, Rolls-Royce and Bentley cars now compete for space with rickshaws and motor-scooters.

In the past few weeks, the cost of Vietnam’s poorly policed transformation has become alarmingly clear, offering food for thought for investors seeking rising returns elsewhere on the frontier-markets map. Economists say the country’s worsening problems, and the impact they could have on its dwindling currency, might also worry textile and agricultural producers in countries like Thailand and Indonesia which compete with Vietnam in those sectors. Read More

SOURCE: J. HOOKWAY And A. TUDOR, Wall Street Journal, December 25, 2010

February 7, 2011 at 7:00 am

Unrest in Egypt turns anxious eyes to Suez Canal

AS VIOLENCE has broken out in Egypt, concern has turned to the risk of the blocking of the Suez Canal or nearby pipelines, which could pose a threat to world energy supplies.

So far oil and gas flows through Egypt have not been interrupted, and the army has strengthened security around the canal and pipelines.

But rising tension in the port of Suez has led several shipping companies to order their ships not to change crews in Egypt. And disruptions in government port services have slowed the discharge of some crude oil cargo at the Red Sea port of Ain Sukhna, at the southern entrance to the canal.

Advertisement: Story continues below ”Potentially, we see attacks on employees of shipping companies and attempted attacks on vessels docked in ports if you see more violent demonstrations around the ports,” said Helima Croft, a director and geopolitical strategist at Barclays Capital. Read More

SOURCE: C. Krauss, The Sidney Morning Herald, February 4, 2011

February 3, 2011 at 8:50 am

APEC Interactive Tariff Database Launch

The business community moves forward with initiative to make trade information in the Asia-Pacific region more widely available

Washington, D.C., January 27, 2011 – The National Center for APEC (NCAPEC) and the United States Council for International Business (USCIB) are pleased to announce the official launch of the pilot phase of the APEC Interactive Tariff Database. The APEC Tariff Database provides business in the APEC region with a tool to make cost-saving sourcing decisions based on up-to-date tariff information.

“This database will save Levi Strauss & Co. time and money by organizing information from many of our key trading partners in an easily searchable manner. Access to accurate and up-to-date information allows us to remain competitive in the global business economy,” noted Laurie Goldman, senior manager of worldwide government affairs and public policy with Levi Strauss & Co.

In 2009 APEC economies agreed to make their customs and tariff information more transparent and available to the public. Members of the business community expressed interest in taking that important progress one step further by creating a robust trade database that would be fully searchable based on Harmonized System classification numbers.

This long-term initiative supported by NCAPEC and USCIB, aims to draw attention to the lack of publicly available information on tariffs and preferential rules of origin which have made it difficult for companies to take full advantage of the many free trade agreements negotiated in the APEC region.

“The APEC economies account for 58 percent of all U.S. exports, while our direct investment in the region totals some $820 billion,” said USCIB Executive Vice President Ronnie Goldberg. “As we seek to increase our competitiveness, create good-paying jobs at home and achieve President Obama’s goal of doubling U.S. exports within five years, companies will need access to new sources of information and market intelligence. This database is an important step in that direction.” Read More

Source: USCIB, News Release, January 27

February 1, 2011 at 7:00 am

Travel with the Northern Kentucky Chamber in 2012

Peru - August 12-20, 2012
To learn more about the program, please email Kyle Horseman or call 859.426.3653.

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