Navarro aids trade zone bid, Mexi+Can Forum

RRU Staff

Associate faculty member Juan Navarro of the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management has recently used his expertise in two successful projects to promote global trade and co-operation.

In early September, after 18 months of work by Navarro and other business leaders and experts working with the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance (VIEA), Vancouver Island was designated as a foreign trade zone by the Government of Canada’s Western Economic Diversification Canada.

Navarro provided insight and advice and recommended strategies to VIEA as it pursued the zone designation.

“This announcement is a great success for the region and the economic impact is expected to be very positive,” Navarro says. “Vancouver Island contributes between 13 per cent to 14 per cent of British Columbia’s gross domestic product; with the foreign trade zone designation, VIEA aims to increase the Island’s contribution to 15 percent.

“This designation is crucial to the growth of the Vancouver Island economy. It will increase global competitiveness, production volumes and distribution of Island-made products.”

On Oct. 12, Navarro participated in discussion on bilateral opportunities between Canada and Mexico at the fourth edition of the Mexi+Can Forum, an event series Navarro co-founded in 2014. This international event held in Vancouver featured leaders from the private and public sectors discussing strategic topics in the context of the Canada-Mexico relationship in the next six years.

“With a new administration taking office this year in Mexico, and the current geopolitical environment across North America, Mexico and Canada are poised to become even more strategic partners,” Navarro says.

Navarro moderated a panel on the flow of talent, featuring panelists Paulina Cameron, regional director for BC, Alberta and Yukon at Futurpreneur Canada; Sana Kapadia, chief impact officer at Spring Activator; and Halia Valladares, dean of the Faculty of Business and Professional Studies at Capilano University.