ACE US Delegation 2024: A wrap up of a successful transatlantic partnership and collaboration


The AmChams in Europe (ACE) delegation, through a constructive agenda, gained valuable insights to fostering transatlantic relations, strengthening relationships, and obtaining important perceptions into the US economic and political landscape. 41 AmCham executives from 31 countries participated in weeklong briefings, meetings, dinners, receptions from April 22 to April 26, 2024.

Washington, DC

Suzanne Clark, President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce welcomed the ACE delegation and a vibrant discussion focused on key issues: advocacy, partnership, job creation, and stronger trade relations. U.S. Chamber of Commerce Briefing Sessions followed: Ashlee Rich Stephenson, Senior Political Strategist, provided a U.S. elections overview; Curtis Dubay, Chief Economist, presented an economic overview; Jay Sapsford, Senior Vice President, discussed geopolitical issues; Marjorie Chorlins, Senior Vice President, Europe, briefed on transatlantic relations and a TTC overview and sectoral overviews was provided by Zach Helzer, Senior Director, Europe and Head, U.S. – UK Business Council & Ivana Zuzul, Executive Director, Europe.

The delegation met with Marisa Lago, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, U.S. Department of Commerce, along with David De Falco, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Europe and Eurasia, discussed synergies to create the conditions for economic growth, the TTC, Chip Act, SMRs, EmpowerHer initiative.

A meeting with the U.S. Small Business Administration led by Dilawar Syed, Deputy Administrator, showcased how SBA oversees programs that provide small businesses and entrepreneurs with counseling and training, access to capital and federal contracts, and disaster assistance.

A reception hosted by DCM Michael Curtis, EU Deputy Ambassador to the United States, at the EU Ambassador Residence, offered great networking opportunities and Marjorie Chorlins, Senior Vice President, US Chamber of Commerce provided the welcoming remarks. Daniel Hamilton, Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Institute, Johns Hopkins University provided an overview of the Transatlantic Economy Report 2024. Ajša Vodnik, Chair of AmChams in Europe, emphasized in her welcome address: “the importance of high-level relations, as well as the significance of fostering interpersonal connections. It is through these interactions that our shared mission is solidified”.

The Transatlantic Business Works Summit, Driving Competitiveness in a Challenging World, organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, focused on how the private sector and policymakers can work better to address key challenges, like boosting economic competitiveness in Europe, regulating the digital and AI boom, and the energy transition. The opening discussion centered on U.S.-Europe commercial ties, working together on global challenges, and regulatory overreach on both sides of the Atlantic with speakers Suzanne Clark, President & CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Susan Danger, CEO, AmCham EU, Markus Beyrer, Director General, BusinessEurope. Enrico Letta, former Prime Minister of Italy & President, Jacques Delors Institute, provided a keynote address on the Future of the EU Single Market. An important session entitled, What’s Next for U.S.-EU Relations, included a pre-recorded message from Gina Raimondo, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, and insightful input from Jon Finer, Principal Deputy National Security Advisor, The White House. The Summit concluded with a motivational speech of the French Embassy in the US promoting Olympics Paris 2024.

At the U.S. Department of State, the delegation had a constructive dialogue with Ambassador Yuri Kim, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs, focusing on transatlantic relations and the priorities of the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs. Ambassador Yuri stressed that the US and Europe should work together during these historical challenges. Sectors for greater cooperation include Energy, AI, Cybersecurity, Supply Chain and Defense.

The ACE network gained valuable insights on the current political climate in the US and US elections in November through discussions at the Atlantic Council. A fruitful exchange with a panel of Europe & Trade Experts, included Jörn Fleck, Senior Director, Europe Center, Frances G. Burwell, Distinguished Fellow, Ambassador Daniel Fried,  Distinguished Fellow, Philippe Dickinson, Deputy Director of the Transatlantic Security Initiative, former Assistant USTR Dan Mullaney, Ilva Tare, Senior Fellow and Penny Naas, Nonresident Senior Fellow, who shared insights on the Biden administration’s trade and industrial policies, as well as potential policy changes in a second Biden/Trump administration.

A dinner with Jon Decker, White House Correspondent and Senior National Editor, Gray Television, who provided an informative overview about the upcoming US elections and an in-depth analysis on the importance of the 7 US swing states for the election outcome.

A highly productive session at APCO Worldwide in Washington, D.C. with insights on the upcoming US elections and projections, the foreign US policy under the latest geopolitical developments, the business and economy impact in Europe and US and potential elections results impacting transatlantic relations. Speakers included Licy Do Canto, Managing Director, Dan Scandling, Senior Director & Government Relations Practice Lead, Safiya Ghori-Ahmad Ahmad, Senior Director, Global Public Affairs and Brandon Neal, Senior Director and Political Strategist, North America.

Miami, Florida

The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce (GMCC) senior executives enjoyed a fruitful dialogue with the delegation, focusing on developing, maintaining, and expanding international business and trade opportunities on key sectors: infrastructure, climate, health, technology, tourism, and sports. GMCC speakers included: Alfred Sanchez, President and CEO, Liane Ventura Guerra, Senior Vice President, International Business & Executive Director, Greater Miami Foreign Trade Zone, P.J. Campbell, J.D., Vice President, Governmental Affairs, Marco Antonio Ramírez Valdez, Vice President of Business Development, Sudeshna Chatterjee, Global Engagement Officer, Maria Dreyfus-Ulvert, Assistant Director for International Business, Alejandra Collarte, Group Chair, International Business and Gina Polo, Vice Chair, International Business.

The meeting discussions continued to the Royal Caribbean Group (RCG), focusing on the tourism sector, where an overview was given of the 3 primary branches and its advances in technology, innovation, sustainability, diversity, and inclusion. The ACE group expanded their knowledge about how the modern cruise industry developed and adapts to the existing challenges ranging from climate change, demand for greater customers’ experiences, regulation, energy, water, etc. RCG speakers included: Christopher Allen, Vice President, Global Deployment and Itinerary Planning, Russell Benford, Vice President, Government Relations Americas, Alessandro Carollo, Associate Vice President, Government Relations, Captain Manolis Alevropoulos, Vice President, Celebrity Marine Operations, Chris- Alexander Korfiatis, Vice President, Marine Technical Operations, Mauricio Lacayo, AVP, Fuel Supply Chain, and Andreas Stylianopoulos, President, Navigator and AmCham Greece Board Member.

An overview of 1Hotel South Beach, a lifestyle brand hotel emphasizing sustainability, was presented by Milton Sgarbi, VP Operations, and Mauricio Miguelena, General Manager, which included a hotel walkthrough to discuss the hotel’s inspiration drawn from nature and its corporate strategy with future hotel developments.

The ACE US Delegation last stop was at the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau. Joe Docal, Director Travel Industry Sales, shared his expertise about Miami, tourism statistics and his insights how Miami is a premier destination.

During the meetings in DC and Miami, the ACE group delved into the multifaceted aspects of the transatlantic relationship—a cornerstone of global stability amidst geopolitical uncertainties, met with decision-makers and visited government institutions and business headquarters. As the ACE US Delegation concluded, participants left with renewed purpose and anticipation for the future. With minds sparked by possibilities, everyone looked forward to meeting again soon for another spectacular AmChams in Europe Best Practice Sharing Conference, in Lisbon, Portugal, where ideas, collaboration, and progress will flourish❗