International Tool Kit
- American Chambers of Commerce Abroad
- Asia Exhibition Forum
- CEM Global Network
- General Information
- International Buyers Program (IBP)
- Overseas Trade Shows and Resources
- Trade Show Certification Program
- Statistics and Research
- US Department of Commerce - USDOC
- U.S. Import Export Data by Industry
- Visa Issues
Asia Exhibition Forum: A complete information source designed to assist IAEE members in learning how to adjust your thinking, your strategic plan and your business operations now to understand the shifts in international trade.
CEM Global Network: The Certified in Exhibition Management (CEM) designation, created in 1975, is recognized globally throughout the exhibition industry as the premier mark of professional achievement. Participation in the CEM Learning Program offers an opportunity to secure the most relevant and practical education available in exhibition management. Programming is conducted globally through IAEE's network of program licensees.
Additional International Information: IAEE also provides a wide variety of international information on IAEE's advocacy, including visa and travel issues, exhibitor warnings, pandemics and other international issues.
IAEE Members may login using their member ID and password to gain access to the Members Only section for information on:
- US DOC International Buyers Program
- CDC Guidelines and Recommendations for SARS
- A Comprehensive Overview of Visas for Foreign Nationals Attending US Trade Shows
United States Department of Commerce
International Trade Administration
The International Buyers Program (IBP) is a joint government-industry effort that promotes U.S. exports by increasing the number of foreign buyers visiting major U.S. trade exhibitions. Through IBP, the U.S. Department of Commerce identifies over 20 leading U.S. companies whose products and services demonstrate high export potential.
Each IBP show features an International Business Center staffed by Commerce trade specialists who provide practical, hands-on assistance. The center is a work area and lounge for foreign buyers, U.S. exhibitors and visitors. Key services available at the Center include:
- Export counseling for U.S. exhibitors and visitors
- A database on foreign buyer information for U.S. exhibitors and visitors
- Assurance that foreign buyers’ business requirements are met
- Information on U.S. exhibitors is made available to foreign buyers, such as the Export Interest Directory
- Conference rooms for business negotiations and a lounge with refreshment
- Interpreters for both U.S. exhibitors and foreign buyers.
To request this service, please contact your nearest U.S. Commercial Service Export Assistance Center, call 1-800-USA-TRADE
The U.S. Commercial Service’s Trade Fair Certification program is a cooperative arrangement between private sector trade show organizers and the U.S. government to increase U.S. exports and expand U.S. participation in overseas trade shows.
Trade Show Organizers may apply for Trade Fair Certification in order to offer U.S. exhibitors the export assistance services provided by the U.S. Commercial Service.
Who’s Eligible for Trade Fair Certification?
Trade associations, trade fair authorities, U.S. show organizers, American Chambers of Commerce, U.S. agents of overseas fair organizers, and other private sector entities that organize and manage international fairs overseas are eligible to seek certification to organize a U.S. pavilion.
Organizers must have a U.S. office and experience in organizing trade shows, trade missions, or similar activities to qualify for certification. No financial assistance is provided to organizers or exhibitors under the Trade Fair Certification Program. However, individual state development agencies may have programs providing financial assistance to organizers and U.S. firms from their state to help them exhibit overseas.
The USITC Interactive Tariff and Trade DataWeb provides international trade statistics and U.S. tariff data to the public full-time and free of charge at http://dataweb.usitc.gov/
To find more information about how to help your members with their Export needs, you can use the US Government’s Export Portal at http://www.export.gov/index.asp
Office of Travel and Tourism
As every country maintains a National Tourism Office, the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries (OTTI) fulfills this inherent federal role of expanding travel and tourism business opportunities for employment and economic growth. The Office is housed in the International Trade Administration, Manufacturing and Services Bureau, Services Division. They provide valuable visitor information through their Market Research.
The American Chambers of Commerce Abroad (AmChams) advance the interests of American business overseas. They are voluntary associations of American companies and individuals doing business in a particular country, as well as firms and individuals of that country who operate in the United States. Currently, 105 AmChams in 91 countries are affiliated with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
AmChams pursue trade policy initiatives, make available publications and services, and sponsor a variety of business development programs. Through four regional organizations in Asia, Europe, the Gulf Countries, and Latin America/the Caribbean, the AmChams represent the concerns and interests of the business community at the highest levels of government and business in trade policy development.
Want more info on AmChams? Call (202) 463-5460.
Trade Show Resources
VISA Issues: If you are a conference organizer or sponsor of a conference or event located in the U.S. and the conference will be held here in the U.S., you can register your show with the US State Department. Consular officials reference this list when processing visas for your overseas attendees. You may contact the email address: firstname.lastname@example.org, sending the following information:
Date(s) when conference or event is to be held;
Title/name of conference or event;
Brief description of the conference, including purpose and sponsorship;
Location of the conference or event;
Expected international attendance (100 visa applicants minimum to post an event), and the total number of expected attendees;
Point of contact (at conference/event organizer): Organization website (if available), contact name, title, address, telephone number and email address, in case the embassy has questions about your announcement.
Providing conference information and a participant list for large conferences does not waive or expedite any visa procedures. It is simply an internal communications tool with our U.S. Embassies and Consulate worldwide to let them know we have been contacted by the U.S. company, notifying us the conference or event is taking place in the U.S.
Translators/Interpreters: Providing even a one-page member benefits document or a FAQ guide for your international visitors in their language can be an enormous customer service tool. Even more beneficial is to have interpreters available at your registration area. The American Translators Association provides a searchable database of translators and interpreters at http://www.atanet.org/
A Comprehensive Overview of Visas for Foreign Nationals Attending U.S. Trade Shows
IAEE's U.S. Department of Commerce Committee is integral in the development of this issue
- Sample Letter of Invitation to Foreign Individual Seeking Invitation to Attend US Trade Show
- Sample Letter of Invitation to Known Overseas Individual Seeking Invitation to Show in USA
- Letter to Consular Section, U.S. Embassy/Consulate Supporting Application for Visa Renewal/Extension by Foreign Individual
- Since air travel is a component of daily life in the exhibition industry, Click Here to stay informed with updated information from the airlines.
Visiting competing trade shows can increase your knowledge of the global industry needs as well as the potential for improving your own exhibition. You can find a list of industry expositions at the following sites:
Foreign Trade Statistics – Industry statistics compiled by the census bureau
National Association of Manufacturers –A powerful lobbying organization representing manufacturers’ interests. They provide quite a few international education sessions for association executives.
Meeting Professionals International – A group serving international meeting planners.
Union of International Associations – A 100 year old organization with databases and publications chronicling the history and meetings of many international associations.
Connected International Meeting Professionals Association – International meeting planning association.
Meetings Net – International meeting planning articles
Atlapedia – Physical and political maps with key figures and statistics per country
ASAE Global Link – Current, timely articles about international issues affecting associations today.
Currency Converter – Lists 164 currencies with the ability to find exchange rates by date.
Global Edge – A collection of international business links and resources.