In January, WRAP Manager of Compliance and Training for the Americas Monica Escobar-Hertzoff and Compliance Coordinator Anthony de Lima will head to Medellin, Colombia, for the 24th Annual Colombiatex of the Americas Conference, held at the Plaza Mayor from January 24-26, 2012. An estimated 416 exhibitors, of whom 60 percent are Colombian and 40 percent are foreign, plan to participate in the conference, which is expected to bring in $119 million U.S. dollars of business.
WRAP will share a booth with the Sewn Products Equipment & Suppliers of the Americas (SPESA), an American trade association devoted to advancing suppliers of sewn products machinery, equipment, parts, and services that is based out of Raleigh, N.C.
WRAP’s focus at the conference will be on increasing our organization’s presence and visibility in the region. WRAP currently certifies apparel factories across the region, including Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras and Peru.
As manufacturing prices and internal demand for products rises in China, WRAP is increasing its focus on sourcing in the Western Hemisphere, which has faster production turn-around times due to its proximity to the United States.
Escobar-Hertzoff and de Lima are both fluent in Spanish and have extensive experience living, working and understanding the culture in the region—Escobar-Hertzoff is Colombian and de Lima has lived in Mexico, Belize and Guatemala.
Escobar-Hertzoff handles WRAP’s compliance and training for the Latin American region and previously worked as an international senior auditor and trainer for WRAP in the region. de Lima handles reports and certificates for certified factories across the world as well as trouble shooting and outreach in the Latin American region.
“Colombia breathes an atmosphere of great optimism, thanks to the Free Trade Agreement recently signed with the United States. The FTA will bring significant opportunities for Colombia as an exporter, and it is an important signal to attract the investment to Colombia. The country has gained confidence in the world and improved its infrastructure, communications, business competitiveness and security in recent years. Colombian companies are prepared to invest in building business capacity, adjust their products portfolios to new market needs, and to find partners in those markets. It will be important for Colombia to consolidate its market position in the U.S. and create lasting business relationships. WRAP is looking forward to be there to continue adding value throughout the process and helping factories become more socially responsible” said Escobar-Hertzoff.
For more information, please refer to the Colombiatex website.