Robert D. Hormats, under secretary for economic, energy and agricultural affairs at the United States Department of State, told a room full of dignitaries and business representatives on Oct. 18 that the State Department is actively working to promote U.S. exports as a way to jump-start the American economy.
“We understand that you just can’t leave it to companies. You need high-level advocacy,” Hormats said. “One of the things that we’re trying to do is to demonstrate that the federal government is engaged in that advocacy.
“When the president goes out, he has two or three or four companies on a list, and he raises them with the president of China, with a number of others, where he identifies particular projects.”
The event, a reception and dinner held at Fordham’s Lincoln Center campus, honored the U.S. ambassadors from Libya, Tunisia, Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Oman, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. It was sponsored by the Business Council for International Understanding, and was part of the U.S.-Middle East Business and Export Promotion Tour.
John Tognino, chairman of the Board of Trustees at Fordham, began the program by recognizing each ambassador in attendance individually.
“Fordham is proud to say we are the Jesuit university of New York, but I think we can safely say that for this evening, we’re the Jesuit university of the world,” Tognino said.