Chair's Message

I am honored to serve as the new Chair of the District Export Council of Southern California (“DECSC”). Following in the footsteps of Marv Sepe, our immediate past chair, is a real challenge; as, to me, Marv is a model example of an American international businessman; capable, confident, determined, and a true leader. Working together, we can keep up the good work and maybe even expand it.

Our DECSC is privileged to serve small and medium sized businesses throughout one of the largest, most dynamic and productive trade-related areas in the country – from the southern tip of Orange County to the southern tip of San Luis Obispo County; an area with a combined population of almost 15 million and a combined GDP of over $1 trillion. Air and sea ports in Los Angeles County handled more than $135 billion in exports and more than $325 billion in imports in 2018. Total trade for 2019 may have approached $500B. The ports of Los Angeles are the main international trade gateways of our country.

In this dynamic environment we are fortunate to have a DECSC membership made up of volunteer professionals with expertise in virtually all areas of international trade; from marketing and finance, to logistics and law, compliance and regulatory matters, insurance, strategic planning, and more. This membership is complemented by additional professionals who participate on our Leadership Task Force (“LTF”) Committee, focusing on specific subject matter and industry areas. It is truly incredible to be able to marshal such expertise and enthusiasm within a single organization of volunteers. The reason is simple: we are all passionate about trade! My sense is we all believe in “commercial diplomacy”.

Our mission is to support the U.S. Commercial Service (“CS”) in promoting U.S. exports. We have been very successful in executing this mission. It is no exaggeration to say our DECSC is the premier “go-to” organization for assisting and complementing the CS in providing international trade-related education, training, and hands-on consulting to small and medium size firms exporting or ready to export. We do this in many ways; e.g., by organizing, sponsoring and executing trade-related training and informational programs, assisting in producing webinars, personal consulting, etc. We collaborate with public and private organizations throughout the state. While the global trade environment is challenging, the benefits of trade are well-known, and our mission is sound.

This year we look forward to continue engaging in numerous, significant trade-related events throughout Southern California; including BIS export controls-related programs in April and September, World Trade Week events in May hosted by the Los Angeles and Irvine Chambers of Commerce and the Port of Hueneme, the Natural Products Expo, the APEC meeting in May, another Tokyo-Tank Export Advantage event, and programs on Aerospace and Cyber Security. We will continue to expand outreach with colleges, universities, and other organizations interested in promoting trade.

Please mark your calendars for our Plenary meetings March 26th in Los Angeles, June 26th (“Retreat”) in Solvang, and September 17th in Thousand Oaks. A date for our December meeting is pending. Please also consult the website to ensure you stay informed of all activities and events.

Our success is the direct result of member participation. Our members consistently “step up” to do what is needed. We have proved we have the experience and the expertise to “make a difference”. Let us expand our outreach to all with the potential to help us in our mission – expanding U.S. exports.

Best regards,

David Habib
District Export Council of Southern California
“By Appointment of the Secretary of Commerce”

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Support for International Trade Issues
Letter Faxed to Members of the California Congressional Delegation - from all five California District Export Councils


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