San Diego waterfront. Courtesy of
San Diego waterfront. Courtesy of

An initiative designed to open up San Diego to global investment was unveiled Wednesday at an event in La Jolla sponsored by the Brookings Institution think tank and the financial firm JP Morgan Chase.

The “Go Global” effort will involve more than 30 area organizations, including the city of San Diego, San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp., Qualcomm Inc., and UC San Diego.

“Opportunities and innovation abound in San Diego and it’s time to tell the world,” Mayor Kevin Faulconer said at the Global San Diego Summit in La Jolla.

“With so much creative talent in life sciences, cyber technology, clean technology and blue technology, we have to begin to discuss ways to think beyond just California and how we can make a real impact on the world,” Faulconer said. “This initiative will serve as the launching pad for our movement to bring international leaders directly to San Diego and help us Go Global.”

According to Brookings, San Diego has the 17th largest economy in the country, but ranks 61st when it comes to export intensity and 49th in the percentage of jobs at foreign-owned firms. This means San Diego has a strong opportunity to increase its level of economic engagement, according to Brookings.

The think tank said that more than 85 percent of global growth through 2019 is projected to occur outside the U.S., so global engagement is essential if cities want to stimulate their economies and workforce.

A report released in conjunction with the unveiling of the program lauded San Diego’s public-private partnerships, technological innovations, weather, tourist destinations and military presence. The city is also well-positioned to take advantage of growing trade along the Pacific Rim.

The report suggested:

  • Holding an annual event in which foreign investors and buyers are brought to San Diego to learn about local industries and opportunities.
  • Creating a campaign to develop a global identity.
  • Possibly setting up trade offices in key markets such as France, Japan, Korea, Mexico and the United Kingdom.

— City News Service