Now a year into the job, Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solis is leading a 13-day mission to the U.S. in May that will include a stop in Atlanta, Global Atlanta has learned.
Mr. Solis will be accompanied by his ministers of trade and external affairs, along with the president of CINDE, the country’s investment promotion agency, according to Andrea Centeno, a CINDE spokeswoman.
Along with targeted meetings with companies and promoting Costa Rica as an investment destination, a key component of the visit will be shoring up ties with the University of Georgia and the Georgia Institute of Technology, both of which have invested in major educational centers in the Central American country over the last decade.
Costa Rica hosts one of UGA’s three overseas campuses. The UGA Eco-Lodge is nestled in the cloud forest of Monteverde, where students can take part in 17 study-abroad programs on coffee production, surfing and society, eco-tourism and other topics.
Georgia Tech in 2009 established a logistics center in San Jose, the capital, at a ceremony attended by former Costa Rican President Oscar Arias Sanchez. Global Atlanta traveled to the country to cover the launch of the Georgia Tech Trade, Innovation and Productivity Center, which produces supply-chain research and provides opportunities for faculty and student exchange.
Business will be very much on the agenda for the president’s Atlanta trip. The Tico Times reported in February that Coca-Cola Co. Chairman, President and CEO Muhtar Kent visited Mr. Solis in Costa Rica to discuss the beverage giant’s plans for expansion and sourcing of new products. The newspaper added that Trade Minister Alexander Mora pointed to a potential Atlanta visit by the president in the future.
Ms. Centeno of CINDE also told Global Atlanta that the delegation will promote Costa Rica’s high-tech scene. The nation of nearly 5 million people is now home to more than 250 information technology companies. Atlanta is one of four cities to be visited on the trip, also including Charlotte, Chicago and Austin, Texas. Other key sectors to be promoted include services (call centers, digital technology, engineering and more), advanced manufacturing, life sciences, food and light manufacturing.
For more on Georgia Tech’s TIP center, click here.
For more on UGA Costa Rica, click here.