City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of International Affairs Hosts the Inaugural Atlanta International Economic Development Summit

Staff Report From Metro Atlanta CEO

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

The City of Atlanta announced that the Mayor’s Office of International Affairs, in partnership with the Brookings Institution, is hosting the inaugural Atlanta International Economic Development Summit, a three-day summit on economic development best practices with partnering cities across the globe. The summit which is being held September 6 – 8, 2017, will bring together an intimate group of 50 thought leaders and economic development professionals from Atlanta’s sister and partnering cities to discuss the importance of city-to-city cooperation and how it can be leveraged to create economic development opportunities.

Representatives from participating cities including Cape Town, South Africa, London, UK, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Paris, France and Ra’anana, Israel will participate in the summit. At the end of the three-day event, MOIA will launch an online platform which will enable this global network of cities to exchange contacts, trade and investment leads, industry needs, upcoming trade events and more.

“I am pleased to host this summit and leaders from cities around the world, who will share their ideas for how this network can be leveraged for economic opportunity and prosperity,” said Mayor Kasim Reed. “This diverse network of international cities offers an invaluable resource for global cooperation and collaboration, and I look forward to the ideas and partnerships that will emerge from this summit. I offer my thanks to our partners who have made this summit possible.”

The summit kicks off with a welcoming reception at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, and continues with a day of roundtable discussions at the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Confirmed speakers during the three-day summit include Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, President and CEO of Sister Cities International Mary Kane, President and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Chamber Hala Moddelmog, Dentons Principal and incoming President and CEO of the Atlanta BeltLine Brian McGowan, Brookings Institution Fellow Marek Gootman and high-level economic development professionals from participating cities.

“The summit gives us an incredible opportunity to establish concrete cooperation projects with cities that share a long-lasting relationship with Atlanta,” said International Affairs Director Claire Angelle. “Our goal is to generate new economic development and job opportunities within each of our cities.”

MOIA will also host a city tour which will include stops at the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Ponce City Market and Tyler Perry Studios.

Since July 2013, the Mayor’s Office of International Affairs has worked to strengthen the mission of the Atlanta Sister Cities Commission whose purpose is to increase efficiency and focus on economic development initiatives. New programming, including the first sister city startup exchange program, has been established to align with this renewed purpose.

The Summit has been made possible with the support of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Invest Atlanta, the Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Atlanta Sister Cities Commission and the Metro Atlanta Chamber.