The 2022 IV CEO Summit of the Americas will leverage the power of the private sector to bring together diverse business leaders—including those representing small and medium-sized enterprises—from the U.S. and across the hemisphere to drive innovative, practical solutions for a brighter future across the Americas.    

The Summit will feature a series of spotlights, armchair conversations, and panels focused on 6 topics: 

  • Trade: Strengthening our nations through trade and commerce
  • Health: Building robust and resilient health economies  
  • Digital Transformation: Advancing an action plan for digital transformation  
  • Energy and Sustainability: Greening growth through energy transition and sustainability  
  • Rule of Law: Enhancing rule of law  
  • Economic Inclusion: Strengthening inclusion in regional trade and supply chains, with a focus on small and medium enterprises

Strengthening our nations through trade and commerce

Trade and economic integration are key to dynamic, sustainable growth. The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented disruptions to local, regional, and global economies. As we come out of this pandemic together and look toward recovery, we have an opportunity to pursue a more integrated regional economy that will enable companies in the Americas to be increasingly competitive on a global scale. This includes creating an environment for growth and foreign investment, establishing regional supply chains that bring in small and medium-sized enterprises, and strengthening digital trade throughout the Americas and the world.

Building robust and resilient health economies

Strong and resilient health economies are essential to public health and will reignite economic recovery. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it clear that greater regional partnership and coordination is needed to strengthen the health economies across the Americas. Enhanced cooperation can ensure that countries have the tools and information they need to keep the people of the region healthy and safe. As we’ve learned over the last two years, strong public-private partnership is necessary to safeguard against future health threats, create innovative financing mechanisms, capture a greater portion of global health trade, harness digital health solutions, and enable people to live healthier, more productive lives. 

Advancing an action plan for digital transformation

Digital transformation can be a powerful tool for growth. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the overwhelming majority of companies were thrust into digitalization. Digital infrastructures and business operations that did not seem possible pre-pandemic had to become possible for businesses to survive. With the digital transformation underway and constantly evolving, the private sector is focused on what a rapidly digitizing economy means for the future, what needs to be in place for this change to be successful, and how government and businesses can collaborate to craft sustainable digital policies that spur economic growth. This process of change will continue for years to come, but to what extent this transformation will propel the region to a new stage of inclusive economic and social development remains to be seen.  Harmonization and convergence of regional standards and regulations for emergent technologies and common digital trade provisions are critical to creating a regional data economy that functions as a single marketplace and can compete with Europe and Asia. The business community is committed to working with governments to ensure that policy frameworks for the digital economy continue to support greater innovation in the hemisphere, and to ensure that digital transformation benefits workers and companies of all shapes and sizes. 

Greening growth through energy transition and sustainability

Environmental sustainability builds economic resilience. Transitioning to more sustainable energy sources not only reduces environmental harm, but also creates new jobs, while providing valuable new services and building resilience. Shifting to more sustainable business practices also provides the opportunity to accelerate economic recovery and create and maintain globally competitive green workforces. As countries create their decarbonization goals and regulatory environmental policies that shift to low and zero emissions, capital and technology deployment by the private sector will play a key role in this effort. It will largely be up to the business community to develop, finance, build, and operate the solutions needed to power economic growth worldwide, mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, and build resilient, lower-carbon infrastructure. 

Enhancing rule of law

Rule of law is paramount to a strong investment climate. When businesses know the rules of the road, they can be more confident in their investment decisions. The rule of law is thus an essential building block and driver of job creation and prosperity. It is also the foundation for strong institutions that constitute vibrant democracies and free enterprise systems, delivering on promises of transparency, predictability, and stability that are vital for inclusive economic growth. The private sector can lead the way. Through socially responsible investments, we can combat corruption, support access to information, and promote sustainable and inclusive growth, but we need cooperation from regional governments.

Promoting broader inclusion of small- and medium-sized businesses in trade and supply chains

Small and medium enterprises are the backbone of economies across the Americas, representing roughly 99% of businesses and a significant percent of private sector employment. Fostering small and medium enterprises, in particular, businesses owned by women and other under-represented communities, is essential for inclusive growth. Throughout the Americas, there are countless small and medium-sized enterprises that bring quality products and services, innovative thinking and creativity, and jobs to their communities. But small and medium businesses also bear a greater burden from regulatory uncertainty and women-owned businesses and entrepreneurs from under-represented communities often face the added challenge of access to capital.

We need to find better ways to help small and medium companies grow and thrive at home and in global markets. This includes better integrating them into regional supply chains and economies to help them weather economic challenges while also harnessing their potential. Private sector leadership combined with public policies can help close opportunity gaps and drive inclusive growth.