The business community on Wednesday lent its collective voice in favor of keeping City of Phoenix trade offices open in Mexico City and Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico.
The trade offices have been closed since July, when the Phoenix City Council voted 6-3 to shutter them temporarily while the awarded consultation contract with public affairs firm Molera Alvarez is protested by competing firms. Phoenix currently contracts with Molera Alvarez to provide trade development consulting services to facilitate economic activity between Phoenix and Mexico.
Arizona business leaders sent a letter to Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego expressing support for Molera Alvarez as the city’s principal trade representative in Mexico and emphasizing the importance of a productive trade relationship between Phoenix and Mexico.
The letter was signed by Glenn Hamer, president and CEO of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Todd Sanders, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Chamber; Miguel Bravo, chairman of the board for the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Kim Sabow, president and CEO of the Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association; Robin Reed, president and CEO of the Black Chamber of Arizona; and Steven Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council.
The letter to Gallego reads:
On behalf of our organizations and our thousands of member companies in the Greater Phoenix area, we want to express our strong support for the work of Molera Alvarez as City of Phoenix Mexico Trade Representative, and our desire for their continued operations.
Since 2014, Molera Alvarez’s team has strengthened and diversified the Phoenix economy through greater engagement with our number one trade partner. They have done a tremendous job of opening up business opportunities throughout Mexico, using market research, trade missions, and business-to-business connections. The Mexico City and Hermosillo offices are invaluable resources for Phoenix companies looking to access the Mexico export market and Mexican companies looking to enter the Phoenix market.
Over the last five years, the Molera Alvarez team has worked hard to build a strong reputation for Phoenix in Mexico, and the best thing the City of Phoenix can do for its relationship with Mexico is keep the relationships at the core of this progress strong. We respectfully request that you vote in favor of city staff’s recommendation to award Molera Alvarez the Mexico Trade Development Consulting Services contract. Thank you.
The City Council will decide the matter at a meeting today.