South American Trade Forum

Organization: Consulate General of Ecuador

Venue: Minneapolis Event Centers

Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Event Date/Time: Oct 28, 2015 / 8:00 am - (CST) End Date/Time: Oct 28, 2015 / 5:15 pm - (CST)
Report as Spam


When: October 28th, 2015 Trade Forum 8:00am-5:15pm: Exhibition: 5:30pm-9:00pm

​About: The South American Trade Forum is an annual event promoting bilateral trade and investment between Minnesota and South America. The event is comprised of three panels, offering businesses both large and small the unique opportunity to learn about importing, exporting, investing, policies, and connections between Minnesota and South America from diplomats and experts from South America and Minnesota.

Immediately following the trade forum is a cultural exhibition and trade show where local artisans, restaurants, performance groups, and live music showcase various aspects of South American culture. Guests also have the opportunity to speak further with our country representatives, and enjoy samples of South American food and wine. 

Our mission is to connect business, political, and academic leaders in both South America, and the Midwest to realize mutually beneficial trade and investment opportunities. We also demonstrate the culture and way of doing business in South America given its importance to business success.

Benefits: At the event businesses in Minnesota and the greater Midwest gain:

  • Access to first hand knowledge from South American diplomats and experts 
  • Access to first hand knowledge and successes from Minnesota businesses
  • Unique networking and connecting opportunities with academic, political, and business leaders from Minnesota and South America 
  • An exhibition of South American food, wine, and culture throughout the event
  • Access to the cultural exhibition and trade show following the trade forum 

Cost of Admission:

Trade Forum and Cultural Exhibition:    $200

Trade Forum:                                         $170

Cultural Exhibition:                                 $50



212 SE 2nd St
United States


Consulate General of Ecuador
333 E. Hennepin Ave
United States
Consulate General of Ecuador
333 E. Hennepin Ave
United States

Additional Information

Additional Information: For more information about the event, agenda, exhibition booths, sponsorships, guests, and registration:

Visit Our Website:

Follow Us: @SouthAmericanTF

Like Us on Facebook:

Contact Isaac Evans

Exhibits included

Agenda (Tentative) October 28th, 2015    

7:30 AM

South American Breakfast and Registration

8:00 AM

How to do Business the South American Way

Silvia Ontaneda-Consul General of Ecuador in Minnesota

8:15 AM

Opening Speech

Discussion of the importance of international trade between Minnesota and South America. 

8:25 AM

Introduction to Expo 2023

Mark Ritchie- Former Minnesota Secretary of State and current President of Expo 2023

8:45 AM

Why Look South?-The Importance of South America

Michael McGee - Foreign Commercial Services Officer at U.S. Commercial Service

9:45 AM

Break and Networking Opportunity

Gather together in the main hall and connect with political, academic, and business leaders from the greater Midwest, Canada, and South America, while enjoying delectable regional hors d'oeuvres. This is the perfect time to form unique connections.  

10:05 AM

Success in South American Markets: Minnesotan Connections   

As the name suggests, the focus of this panel revolves around the strategies on how to do business in South America as well as success stories from companies with a long history of investment and expansion in the region.

Moderator: Ryan Kanne - Director of the U.S. Commercial Service

4 Panelists: To be announced

11:35 AM

Authentic South American Lunch 

Enjoy the finest examples of South American Cuisine prepared by Minnesota's own award winning chef, Jaime Sierra, Andean instrumental music performed by Ecuador Manta, and a live tango performance: brought to you by the Consulate General of Ecuador in Minnesota.  

1:10 PM

Market Entry Opportunities & Challenges in South America 

Learn from small business leaders in Minnesota about the strategies, opportunities, and successes they have experienced while trading with South America. They will demonstrate how to get involved in the larger bilateral relationship, and  how to find the right niche that fits your interests.


Moderator: Rob Scarlett - Senior Advisor at Clearwater Layline, LLC

4 Panelists: To be announced

2:40 PM

Break and Networking Opportunity  

3:00 PM

South American Connections: Market Knowledge from Country Officials 

Hear from the Consul Generals, and other knowledgeable country representatives from South America about unique opportunities from their respective countries, as well as essential information necessary to successfully start or expand your business in the region. 


Moderator: Rachel Limón 


Marcelo Suarez Salvia - Consul General of Argentina in Chicago

Jesus Rodriguez Espinoza - Consul General of Venezuela in Chicago

Consulate General of Chile in Chicago - Speaker to be announced

Consulate General of Ecuador in Minnesota - Speaker to be announced

4:40 PM

Closing Ceremony and Special Recognitions

Closing Keynote Speaker: Francisco Borja Cevallos- Ecuadorian Ambassador to the United States  

5:15 PM

Cultural Exhibition and Trade Show

Experience first-hand a glimpse of South American culture and products, presenting knowledgeable Minnesotan and foreign businesses, and the breadth of South American artistic talent such as live music, folkloric dances, traditional craftsmanship, and of course, the vast gastronomic and oenologic masterpieces. This is also another perfect opportunity to network and get to know businesses interested in exporting and importing.  This event will be sponsored by His Excellency, the Ambassador of Ecuador to Washington D.C., the United States of America, as well as the Consulate General of Ecuador to Minnesota.