Assistant Secretary Jose W. Fernandez Traveling to North Africa

Notice to the Press
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 24, 2010

Assistant Secretary for Economic, Energy and Business Affairs Jose W. Fernandez will be traveling to Algiers from November 29 to December 3, 2010, to attend the U.S.-Maghreb Entrepreneurship Conference. This conference is a regional follow-up to President Obama’s Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship that took place in Washington D.C. in April 2010.

Assistant Secretary Fernandez will hold a special press briefing about his trip on November 29, 2010, at noon in the State Department press briefing room, Room 2209.

The conference will bring together business leaders, youth and entrepreneurs from North Africa, the North African Diaspora and the U.S. The conference will include moderated discussions on key issues and challenges for advancing entrepreneurship, improving access to capital, enabling small and medium sized enterprise, catalyzing youth entrepreneurship, promoting cross-border business partnership initiatives, transatlantic business networking, cultivating innovation and incubating technology, and exploring business opportunities in the creative industries.

Assistant Secretary Fernandez will be the lead U.S. government official at the conference. He will announce the U.S.-North Africa Partnership for Economic Opportunity, as well as five follow-on initiatives.

Assistant Secretary Fernandez also plans to travel to Tunisia (December 3-4), Libya (December 4-6) and Morocco (December 6-7) immediately following the conference to promote a new U.S.-North Africa public-private partnership focused on boosting economic opportunity through social networking, support for start-ups and youth entrepreneurship training in the region, and greater people-to-people ties between the United States and the Maghreb.

Media representatives may attend the press briefing upon presentation of one of the following: (1) A U.S. Government-issued identification card (Department of State, White House, Congress, Department of Defense or Foreign Press Center), (2) a media-issued photo identification card, or (3) a letter from their employer on letterhead verifying their employment as a journalist, accompanied by an official photo identification card (driver’s license, passport.)

PRN: 2010/1707