While the main focus in the July Pan Am games will be on the sporting events, Hamilton’s Economic Development department will team up with Niagara counterparts to pitch the region’s investment opportunities to visiting business people from Latin America and the US. To take advantage of the games, a detailed “Playbook” is being utilized to maximize economic benefits by creating strategically designed programs and events to promote investment and provide exposure to companies within this Region.
The Pan Am Games will create an influx of visitors, athletes and media which, in turn, will drive an increase in spending and injection of capital into the local economy. Recognizing that these impacts will be relatively short-lived, the Cities of Hamilton, St. Catharines, Welland and Niagara Region have planned to capitalize on this unique opportunity.
A two-phased approach was employed in the development of this strategy. The first phase will be to identify key opportunities for investment from participating nations. The second phase is to develop an Action Plan or “Playbook” for pursuing specific sectors and businesses identified in the Phase 1 analysis.
For phase I, the partnership retained Deloitte to assist in their efforts to capture a greater level of “investment focused” economic activity and legacy for the Region.
While Federal and Provincial programs work to promote economic regions, foreign investment attraction quickly comes down to specific businesses and the investment climate that is created in cities like Hamilton
The City of Hamilton has established industry clusters that have competitive advantages in the key sectors that were also identified by the Niagara Corridor partnership communities. From a foreign direct investment attraction perspective, Hamilton currently identifies and has strengths in its major sectors: Advanced Manufacturing / Clean Technology; Life Sciences; ICT and Digital Media and Agri-Business and Food Processing and related industries. The relative lack of congestion in both the City of Hamilton and Niagara Region is also a major competitive advantage, particularly for attracting goods production and distribution activities dependant on the trade corridors through the United States and into Mexico.
The targeted nations include the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia and Chile as the top scoring nations. These five are the largest and amongst the fastest growing of the participating nations, and also align well with the economic base of Niagara-Hamilton. The framework also identified a clear list of secondary targets, namely Argentina, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru.
The Greater Region is being highlighted to companies, investors and other associations. A consulting firm has been hired to highlight to the embassies of participating countries the Hamilton-Niagara Regions’ attractiveness to foreign investors and our companies’ abilities to market technology and innovation to the Latin America and United States Regions.
The Hamilton-Niagara region has all the elements of a globally oriented city, with universities and colleges of high standards, anchor industries, developing innovation cluster and sound governance. This program will highlight the integrated benefit of these elements to global partners and investors that all the region companies can benefit from.
Latin American countries and the United States will be encouraged to invest in the Region in the following three sectors: 1) Agribusiness and Food Processing, 2) ICT and Digital Media and 3) Advanced Manufacturing.
The Playbook will comprise several programs:
- Three tours – Food and Agricultural Familiarization Tour; an ICT / Digital Media Familiarization Tour and an Interactive Manufacturing Tour – with a focus on Power Generation & Clean Energy
- We are hosting a Bilateral Trade forum;
- A “Niagara Day”- specific to the Niagara Region;
- A “Hamilton Day” – specific to Hamilton – (the day will provide a focus on our Life Sciences sector as well as our world renowned Research & Development facilities
- Hamilton alone will host a Real Estate and Investment Familiarization Tour
Each program will also include access to the Pan Am Games – Soccer, Rowing and Flat Water Sports and community hosted activities.