[The First Minister of Wales at the New York stock exchange]
Wales has a long history of strong business ties with America, from the stong links during the industrial revolution to billions of dollars / pounds worth of investments today.
There are around 260 American companies based in Wales and many Welsh companies doing business in the USA, one of our most important trading partners. Of the many North American companies that have bases in Wales such as GE Aviation, PCI, General Dynamics and Zimmer Biomet, close to 50% of them are in the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing sector.
Wales has been at the forefront of engineering since the Industrial Age and now specializes in many sub-sectors of manufacturing including:
- Aerospace: Wales carries out 25% of the UK’s Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul of aircraft (MRO) and 50% of the world’s passengers fly on aircraft with wings made in Wales.
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Parc Aberporth is one of the world’s largest testing sites for UAVs.
- Automotive: one third of all car engines manufactured in the UK are made in Wales.
- You’re increasingly likely to find a piece of Wales in your iPhone or airplane; or on your screen.
Wales has particular strengths in the Life Sciences sector developing diagnostics, medical technology and stem cell research. Wales is home to Europe’s first Centre for NanoHealth, the Welsh Life Sciences Hub and the American company GE Healthcare’s first Innovation Village in the UK opened in Cardiff.
The Welsh Creative Sector is increasingly visible and many productions made in Wales have aired on BBC America. The BBC’s centre of excellence for drama at Roath Lock in Cardiff produces flagship programs like Dr Who and Sherlock for international audiences and you can find out more on our dedicated TV and Film pages.
The USA is also the second highest source of foreign direct investment in the food and drink sector in Wales and it’s no surprise with our outstanding produce. USA citizens visit Wales every year in their 10’s of thousands to take in the brilliant Welsh landscapes and learn more about our shared cultures.
The Welsh Government has developed a network of trade and investment offices across the United States, in Washington D.C, New York City, San Francisco, Atlanta and Chicago. The Welsh Government international offices are responsible for contributing to activity in the fields of trade and investment, government relations, tourism, culture and education. They build and maintain relations, facilitate business meetings and deliver a programme of activity to promote Wales as a place to invest, do business, work, study and visit.
The First Minister of Wales, Carwyn Jones, visited Philadelphia and New York in 2018, to strengthen trade links and to promote Wales as a business location. You can read more here. In fact, the Welsh Government has made a number of trade missions to the USA in recent years demonstrating the importance of American business, with companies met in Atlanta, Cincinnati and Chicago as well.
Through various trade missions to the USA, a number of partnerships have been strengthened.