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WTCC Weekly News April 30, 2004 

April 30, 2004 - Roundtable Discussion with a Serbian Delegation, Tenth Year of South African Freedom, Hungary's Growing Potential, Upcoming Events and Featured Member Flanders Foreign Investment

Serbian Delegation
On Monday, April 26, 2004 the WTCC welcomed members from the Novi Sad Chamber of Commerce in Serbia. The delegation included prominent business owners from the region interested in expanding their professional horizons abroad. Ambassador Allan Lever provided the delegation with information regarding the WTCC and the Chicagoland area and the many opportunities for such foreign aspiring businesses. Chicago has the largest Serbian population after Belgrade, making Chicago a valuable point for Serbian products and services. The Consul General, Hon, Desko Nikitovic and special guest Dr Ivan Vujacic were also present at the discussion, have already furthered the interests of the Chicago Serbian community. Consul General Nikitovic’s dedicated service has expanded to all areas, especially that of business. America is currently the largest investor in Serbia and further investment is encouraged, as shown by this business delegation. Serbian products and services are attractive for many markets. Business delegations, such as this, visit the WTCC regularly hoping to benefit from the services that the association has to offer; members are invited to join any roundtable meeting held within the WTCC offices.

Ten Years of Freedom

Democracy guarantees all citizens the same opportunities, particularly the right to vote. Tuesday, April 27, 2004 marked the tenth anniversary of South Africa’s first democratic elections. The country took a momentous step to guarantee its own citizens equal opportunities. Chicago participated in its own festivities under the direction of the South African Consulate General. Chicagoans representing many sectors, government and public, joined to participate in various programs highlighting this celebrated nation. One particular program entitled “Doing Business in South Africa” depicted one of the world’s favorite emerging markets. The market offers investors sophisticated infrastructures and exceptional investment opportunities. The ten years of democracy have produced a maturing economy insuring future success. The keys of success have been shown for unlocking the economic potential of South Africa. This informative workshop was sponsored by the South African Business Club, Chicago Chapter; South African Consulate General, Chicago; and the South African Department of Trade & Industry. The festivities were introduced by a welcome from South African Consul General Hon. Pat Sonjani. Additionally, the economic potential was further highlighted by speakers Dr. Ayesha Hakeem, Executive Director of Africa Connections; Mr. James Bell, Aquila Growth Ltd; and Mr. Yunus Houssen, Economic Consul at the South African Consulate. The South African market is one that offers many opportunities and incentives for foreign investors. The day of celebration came to a close with a reception to truly commemorate the “Tenth Year of Freedom in South Africa.”

Hungary’s Growing Potential
Success is found for those that take advantage of all possibilities. Promise of possibilities is certainly found in Hungary. Hungary is one of Europe’s fastest-growing, fully functioning market economies. It truly is a “Hot Business Market.” The Hungarian market is customs-free and provides access to 600 million potential consumers. The strategic location as a central distribution point for European countries allows for this depth of consumer market. Many companies, specifically 323 of Fortune 500, have found tremendous return on investment. Still, Hungary possess a top foreign direct investment position bringing six consecutive years of sustained GDP growth, averaging 4.5% annually.

Stability may be seen politically and economically, offering potential investors an optimal business environment. Supportive and effective legal systems as well as competitive operating conditions prove to be inducements for capital investors. Major strength is found in the highly skilled and creative labor force. This is made possible by governmental investments in education. The government has made it a priority to attract foreign investments into Hungary. Laws and treaties have been enacted to protect such investments and truly further this favorable investment climate. Government investment incentives include the lowest corporate tax rate in continental Europe, free trade agreements beyond EU borders, and significant tax allowances. Nearly every segment of its economy has been opened to foreign investors.
The highly skilled labor force has brought investment in high-tech areas. Companies such as Nokia and Siemens have already taken advantage of the professional, but low cost labor force. The manufacturing industry has received the greatest stake of foreign investment. Hungarian industries are expanding under the guiding hand of governmental policies. As a result, the nation has become the region’s most attractive place to invest. Hungary has progressed socially and economically to benefit not only the citizens of Hungary, but also the international community.

The World Trade Center wants to ensure that regional companies take advantage of every business opportunities. Hungary’s potential will be shared with all interested in WTCC’s upcoming Hungarian Business Matchmaking Event. The event will allow American and Hungarian businesses to meet and form potential contacts. To view specific information regarding this event, please visit www.wtcc.org/opportunities/wtcc_viewmsg.asp?first=705&last=756&range=x4/01/2004xyandyx
12/31/2004x&ID=763

Upcoming Events
WTCC Members Roundtable
Featuring Mr. Uriel Lynn, President, Israeli Chamber of Commerce
Monday, May 17, 2004

Hungarian Business Matchmaking Event
Tuesday, May 25, 2004


Black Economic Empowerment Delegation from South Africa
June 15 to June 17
More details & delegation lists for events are available on the WTCC website www.wtcc.org/opportunities/wtcc_events.asp



Featured Member Profile: Flanders Foreign Investment Office

Flanders Foreign Investment Office is an agency of the Flemish Government dedicate to promoting Flanders as an investment location for foreign businesses. The FFIO provides investors with free and confidential advice regarding financial, technical, and practical aspects in investing in Flanders. They are the official guide for any business thinking of investing in this prosperous area. Their experts shepherd one through the topics of finance & economics, financial grants & benefits, R & D support, technical support, site selection, licensing & permissions, and labor.

The FFIO is based in Brussels and has branches in the Chicago, Dallas, London, New York, San Francisco, Tokyo, and Singapore to guarantee successful exposure for this growing region. The representatives are highly qualified to assist and advise potential investors in needed fields. Their quality support utilizes every available resource to insure quality service. In addition to personal assistance on major issues, the office maintains a comprehensive database of up-to-date national, regional and local economic information. This can be invaluable for comparing office rents, labor costs, tax levels and other key factors.

Flanders lies in the northern region of Belgium offering one of the fastest links to the European market. Its location is at the heart of Europe’s wealthiest and most populated areas. This allows suppliers to be close by for investing needs. This is furthered through Flanders’ optimal business environment that offers efficient and advanced transport and communications infrastructures with easy access to neighboring countries and beyond. The educated and dedicated workforce and government have shown to be the most productive in the Union. Flanders has an infrastructure that combines with its convenient location making it a crucial point of investment for any company.

If you are interested in the international business culture that Flanders has to offer, the FFIO has the services needed for your company to make the necessary and profitable transition. Their expertise proves to be the ultimate guide for business ventures.

801 Warrenville Road, Suite 55
Lisle, IL 60181
Tel (630) 719
E-mail: ffiochicago@aol.com

pátek dubna 30 2004 03:45 dop.


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World Trade Center Chicago
The Aon Center, Suite 2200
200 East Randolph
Chicago, IL 60601
Tel.: 312/467-0550
Fax: 312/467-0615
E-mail: info@wtcc.org