LAFAYETTE — Acadiana businesses interested in making money from the Panama Canal expansion and a U.S. trade pact with Central America and the Dominican Republic can learn more at a seminar this week sponsored by Le Centre International de Lafayette.
The presentation will be Wednesday from 11 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. at the Petroleum Club of Lafayette, at 111 Heymann Blvd. Those interested in attending should register as early as possible because seating is limited. To register or for information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (337) 291-5474.
Three export and import trade professionals will weigh in on the opportunities from the Panama Canal’s widening and the 10-year-old CAFTA-DR, the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement. Other CAFTA-DR countries are Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.
Gary P. LaGrange, president and CEO of the Port of New Orleans, will speak on the canal’s expansion and its benefits to the port and to Louisiana.
A widened canal, expected to open in 2016, will accommodate much larger cargo ships carrying goods to and from the Gulf Coast and Atlantic Coast.
Speaking on the free trade pact will be John T. Hyatt, vice president at The Irwin Brown Company. Hyatt will give an overview of how CAFTA-DR has fared over the 10 years it’s been in existence and the benefits it brought to the participating countries.
The third speaker, Delilah DeSouza, is a senior international trade specialist. DeSouza is associated with the New Orleans U.S. Export Assistance Center, U.S. Commerce Service, International Trade Association and the U.S. Department of Commerce.
DeSouza will give a report on a 2014 Louisiana trade mission to Panama.