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Visit to the United States by Undersecretary for Economic Development Prof. Michele Geraci (July 7 – 12, 2019)

Undersecretary for Economic Development Prof. Michele Geraci was in the United States from July 7 to 12, visiting Washington D.C., Boston and New York.
In Washington D.C., Undersecretary Geraci delivered remarks at the conference “Italy, Europe and the United States: facing inevitable changes in a smart way,” organized by Aspen Institute Italia at the Embassy of Italy, highlighting the depth of trade ties between our two countries. During the event, Undersecretary Geraci met with Rick Perry, U.S. Secretary of Energy, who opened the conference with Ambassador of Italy, Armando Varricchio.

Also in Washington D.C., Undersecretary Geraci had meetings with various members of the U.S. Administration, including Keith Krach, Undersecretary for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment at the State Department, Jeffrey Gerrish, Deputy U.S. Trade Representative, Thomas Feddo, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Investment Security at the Department of Treasury, Andrew Rollo, Senior Director for International Trade and Investment for the National Economic Council, and Gilbert Kaplan, Under Secretary for International Trade. Furthermore, Undersecretary Geraci had a meeting with the leadership of Heritage Foundation to discuss the main and most recent developments in international trade.

“We underlined the Italian position regarding the need to revise the tariffs list – said Undersecretary Geraci – a list, which unfairly targets Italian products, especially those linked to the automotive and to the agriculture and food sectors. We are working hard to achieve this important result – the Undersecretary concluded – also because a revision of the tariffs can only benefit Italy that is an exporting country.”

Undersecretary Geraci then traveled to Boston where he met Nam Pham, Assistant Secretary of Business Development and International Trade of Massachusetts, and Brittany McDonough, Director of Global Partnerships at the MassChallenge incubator, and where he took part in a roundtable discussion with Harvard students on economic issues and current affairs.

In New York, Undersecretary Geraci met with representatives of the finance community and with Justin Smith, CEO of the Bloomberg Media Group. Undersecretary Geraci also visited the robotics and drones laboratory of New York University as well as “The Shed” and “The Vessel” Hudson Yard buildings, both built by Cimolai Group, and had a meeting with Italian companies, organized by the Italian Trade Agency. The mission ended with Undersecretary Geraci meeting and encouraging the new Italian entrepreneurs, startuppers, participating in the Global Startup Program, in New York as well as in other big cities in the world, an initiative that Undersecretary Geraci personally endorsed and that is supported by the Italian Ministry of Economic Development and by the Italian Trade Agency.

“I decided to include a 3-month international internship in the program supporting Italian startups – Undersecretary Geraci explained – because it is the only way to truly accelerate the growth and development of the young companies that were selected to take part in the program. The United States, the UK, Japan, South Korea, China and Slovenia are the six countries that will host the more than 100 companies partaking in the Global Startup Program. The companies will be trained with the goal of promoting their growth and to help them achieve a better understanding not only of the Italian market, but also of the international one. The objective of the internship is also to make the startups aware of the need to focus on finding customers even more than on finding investors. I truly hope that new ‘Made in Italy champions’ shall arise from these startups.”