Make us your home page
Instagram

Gov. Rick Scott heading to Chile for trade mission

Florida Gov. Rick Scott leaves next week for Chile. It will be his eighth overseas trade mission.

SCOTT KEELER | Times

Florida Gov. Rick Scott leaves next week for Chile. It will be his eighth overseas trade mission.

TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott will lead a state delegation to Chile next week, his eighth overseas trade mission since taking office.

For three days beginning Tuesday, the Florida visitors will meet with U.S. Ambassador Alejandro Wolff and network with business leaders in Santiago. No meetings with Chilean President Sebastián Piñera appear on Scott's preliminary schedule.

Scott says his presence as delegation leader on trips to foreign lands helps forge ties with firms simply by opening doors.

"You build relationships for a lot of companies that wouldn't get meetings if I didn't go on the trade delegation," Scott said. "You build relationships with Florida companies and companies overseas, and with governments overseas."

Chile is Florida's No. 6 export destination for products. Exports jumped 24 percent last year, according to Enterprise Florida, the public-private economic development partnership organizing the trip. Chile was the first Latin American country to sign a free-trade agreement with the United States in 2004.

Carlos Curbelo, a Miami-Dade School Board member, is going at his own expense, as a public relations consultant.

"Florida, and especially South Florida, is a natural market for any Latin American country," Curbelo said. "We have the transportation and infrastructure, and then there's the language. Everyone from South America feels comfortable here. It's a natural fit."

Broward County Mayor Kristin Jacobs, who's also going, said increased trade with Chile would benefit the two busy South Florida seaports, Port Miami and Port Everglades.

"Increasing trade between the two is a very important step," Jacobs said, "and both Miami-Dade and Broward have a very strong port presence on this trip."

Port chiefs Bill Johnson in Miami and Steven Cernak in Fort Lauderdale are part of the 96-member delegation, along with port officials from Jacksonville, Bradenton, Cape Canaveral and Panama City.

Others scheduled to go are Broward College president David Armstrong; Florida Power & Light president Eric Silagy; lawyer-lobbyist Fred Leonhardt; and Park Brady, CEO of the St. Joe Co., a major real estate developer and landowner in Florida.

This is Scott's first visit outside the United States since Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll resigned on March 12. With the No. 2 post still vacant, the next official in the line of succession to the governor's office is Attorney General Pam Bondi.

Scott's chief of staff, Adam Hollingsworth, said the governor will stay in frequent contact with his Tallahassee-based staff with the help of email and cellphones.

"It's hard to imagine a scenario in which he could not be communicated with or provide executive direction," Hollingsworth said.

The last time a Florida governor visited Chile was 2007, when Charlie Crist made a stop there during a tour that included visits to Brazil and Argentina.

Miami Herald staff writer Marc Caputo contributed to this report. Contact Steve Bousquet at bousquet@tampabay.com or (850) 224-7263.

Gov. Rick Scott heading to Chile for trade mission 05/17/13 [Last modified: Friday, May 17, 2013 11:04pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Another Pinellas foreclosure auction fools bidders, raises questions

    Real Estate

    For the second time in six weeks, a company connected to lawyer Roy C. Skelton was poised to profit from a Pinellas County foreclosure auction that confused even experienced real estate investors.

    A Palm Harbor company bid  $112,300 for  this Largo townhome at a foreclosure auction July 21 not realizing the auction involved a second mortgage, connected to lawyer and  real estate investor Roy Skelton -- and that the bank could still foreclose on the  first mortgage.
[SUSAN TAYLOR MARTIN   |   Times]
  2. Clearwater-based USAmeriBank acquired by New Jersey bank in $816 million deal

    Banking

    CLEARWATER — USAmeriBancorp, Inc., based in Clearwater, is being acquired by New Jersey's Valley National Bancorp in an $816 million deal, it was announced today.

    Joe Chillura, CEO of USAmeribank, shown inside a branch in Ybor City in this file photo.
[KATHLEEN FLYNN l Times]
  3. Outback Steakhouse sees growth in U.S. and Brazil markets in second quarter

    Retail

    TAMPA — Restaurant sales were up at Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba's Italian Grill during the second quarter of 2017, but Bonefish Grill continues to lag at Tampa-based Bloomin' Brands.

    The Outback Steakhouse, on 4088 Park St. N, is showin on July 26, 2017. Restaurant sales were up at Outback Steakhouse  and Carrabba's Italian Grill during the second quarter of 2017, but Bonefish Grill continues to lag at Tampa-based Bloomin' Brands. [SCOTT KEELER | Times]
  4. Controversial landfill site could be rechristened as industrial recruiting land in Pasco

    Economic Development

    The east Pasco property of Angelo's Aggregate Materials, which failed to obtain a state environmental permit to be developed as a garbage landfill, is being studied as a potential 1,000-acre mega site for industrial recruitment.

  5. Marriott opening new hotel on Clearwater Beach

    Tourism

    CLEARWATER BEACH — A dual-branded Marriott hotel with a tongue-twister name is opening on Clearwater Beach in August. The Residence Inn Tampa Clearwater Beach and SpringHill Suites Tampa Clearwater Beach will have 255 suites total, connected by a lobby.

    A dual-branded Marriott hotel called the Residence Inn Tampa Clearwater Beach and SpringHill Suites Tampa Clearwater Beach will open in August in Clearwater Beach. Pictured is a rendering.
[Courtesy of Hayworth PR]