Inaugural regional summit gets underway in Bogota  

  • 8 May 2024

The ICC World Federation of Chambers (WCF) and the Bogotá Chamber of Commerce (CCB) is set to host the Summit of the Americas from 8-9 May 2024 in Bogotá.

This inaugural WCF regional summit will analyse market trends and international business opportunities in key sectors for MSMEs, through an academic and networking space that will promote trade and boost sales for entrepreneurs in Bogotá and the region. 

Under the theme ‘Business Beyond Borders: MSMEs Going Global’, the summit will bring together representatives from more than 30 countries, 35 chambers of commerce, and 500 MSMEs as well as over 400 trading companies for two days of business learning and networking.  

Chair of the ICC World Chambers Federation Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu said: 

“We’re excited to launch our WCF regional summit series in Colombia, laying the groundwork for a global initiative that brings chambers together from across the world to foster collaborative endeavors aimed at enhancing business prosperity. As we look ahead, we eagerly anticipate welcoming numerous chambers from all around the world to our second edition in October, hosted by the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Türkiye in Istanbul.” 

The agenda of the event will address topics of global interest ranging from leadership lessons for entrepreneurs from panels, keynote speeches and dynamic interviews analysing lessons learned from global leaders, best practices, challenges in regional value chains and the expansion of markets through empowerment, chamber relations and the cultural connection.  

Ovidio Claros Polanco, president of the Bogotá Chamber of Commerce said:  

“From the Chamber of Commerce of Bogotá, we want to promote and make viable workspaces that allow the development of the businesses of MSMEs, in order to strengthen the popular economy. With this summit, we want to contribute to the expansion of markets and their businesses, promoting a connected and thriving business environment”.  

Aiming to approach global challenges and opportunities through a regional lens, the summit will also  explore how digital tools, from technology optimisation to artificial intelligence, are transforming business. It will also examine how geopolitics and global supply chains in Latin America are essential in an interconnected world to support MSMEs, the backbone of the economy. 

John W.H. Denton AO, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce, said:  

“Enhancing the capacity of businesses to innovate, scale up, and generate opportunities for everyone, everywhere, our inaugural WCF Regional Summit will be a catalyst for chambers and businesses in Latin America to bolster trade and strengthen international cooperation. In turn, the real economy issues and barriers discussed at the Summit will inform our work at the global level as the most inclusive business network in the world”. 

In addition to Mr Denton, headline speakers attending the Summit of the Americas are María Fernanda Garza, Chair of the International Chamber of Commerce; Toki Mabogunje, Vice-President for Africa of the ICC World Federation of Chambers; Richard Ngatia, President of the East African Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture; Hassan Al Hashemi, Vice-President of International Relations, Dubai Chamber; Marcelo Elizondo, Director of the Argentine Chamber of Commerce; Maria Teresa Bustamante, President of the Brazilian Chamber of Commerce and Federation of Industries; Shannon K. O’Neill, Vice-President of the Council on Foreign Relations; and Andrés Moreno, Founder, Chairman of the Board of Directors, and CEO of Open English. 

Learn more about WCF regional summits