International Affairs

Mayor Garcetti is committed to expanding Los Angeles’ global leadership. He knows that when we deepen our ties abroad, we attract more tourists to our City, support our businesses, expose our students to new skills and experiences, enrich our culture, and create jobs here at home. That is why he created the Mayor’s Office of International Affairs to broaden the city’s engagement on everything from tourism, trade, combating climate change, giving students an international perspective, and preparing for the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

LOS ANGELES IS OPEN FOR GLOBAL BUSINESS. Mayor Garcetti is working to deepen Los Angeles’ global connections through expanded trade, investment, and exports — because extending our businesses’ international reach and relationships creates more jobs and greater prosperity for L.A. workers, innovators, creators, manufacturers, and families. Mayor Garcetti’s July 2018 trade mission to Tokyo, Seoul, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Hong Kong advanced these goals. The Mayor’s Office also launched a program in partnership with World Trade Center Los Angeles to attract, promote, and retain international investment. In 2018, foreign-owned enterprises provided more than 48,000 jobs in the city. Additionally, the Mayor’s Export Program helps companies, particularly small and medium-sized businesses, build their export capacity and capture overseas opportunities with support from our local, state, and federal partners.

WELCOMING THE WORLD IN 2028. Hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2028 is an opportunity to welcome the world to Los Angeles. Our third Olympic Games and first Paralympic Games will showcase our city, engage the next generation of global citizens, and impart our values and innovations to the Olympic and Paralympic Movement. Through Mayor Garcetti’s leadership, Los Angeles is writing a new Olympic legacy rooted in a fiscally responsible and sustainable Games that will make use of our existing infrastructure, provide universal access to sports for our children, inspire neighborhood-led celebrations of arts and culture, and include all Angelenos in the Olympic and Paralympic experience.

WORKING TOWARD THE GLOBAL GOALS. Mayor Garcetti has committed Los Angeles to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), or the “Global Goals,” a shared agenda for development adopted by the member states of the United Nations to end poverty, protect the planet, and equitably broaden prosperity. The Mayor’s Office, with support from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and others, is taking steps to implement the SDGs at the local level, transparently track Los Angeles’ progress, engage with the community and our partners across public, private, academic, and nonprofit sectors, and incorporate the Goals into the City’s long-term planning.

INTERNATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUNG ANGELENOS. The Mayor’s Office of International Affairs established the Mayor’s Young Ambassadors (MaYA) initiative to connect young Angelenos with the international community, inform them about international career paths and opportunities, and encourage them to become citizens of the world. As part of MaYA, Mayor Garcetti launched a free international travel program for College Promise students. This initiative offers community college students from underrepresented backgrounds the transformational experience of traveling abroad, expanding their worldview, exposing them to new opportunities, and preparing them to succeed in a globalized world. Since 2018, the program has sent nearly 100 students overseas to five countries: Egypt, Mexico, Japan, France, and Vietnam.

In partnership with the L.A. Unified School District and the diplomatic corps, in 2019, we are launching "My Global L.A. Day," which connects diplomats posted in Los Angeles to local high school students. The annual My Global L.A. Day marks the start of a year-long relationship between the school and Consulates to collaborate on initiatives and connect L.A.'s young people to real-world diplomacy and international relations.

BUILDING TIES BETWEEN DIPLOMATS AND THE COMMUNITY. Los Angeles is home to the third largest Consular Corps in the world, hosting diplomats from more than 100 different countries. Partnering with the Los Angeles Consular Corps (LACC), the Mayor’s Office regularly comes together to volunteer in our communities, including helping people experiencing homelessness and cleaning up the L.A. River.

AMERICA’S GLOBAL CITIES. The Mayor’s Office of International Affairs works with domestic partners to promote Los Angeles' values and demonstrate our leadership as a global city — from the Mayor’s annual State of the Global City address hosted by the Pacific Council on International Policy, to the annual L.A. Summit on U.S. City Diplomacy at USC, to resolutions adopted by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, urging the U.S. Administration to engage positively with international partners.

STRENGTHENING BONDS WITH SISTER CITIES. Sister Cities of Los Angeles, Inc. (SCOLA) is a diplomatic platform for Los Angeles that promotes cooperation and direct engagement with its global partners on issues of mutual interest, particularly around business and commerce, tourism, education, and culture.

MEXLA. In March 2019, Mayor Garcetti, alongside Mexico Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, announced a new initiative, called MEXLA, a commission made up of leaders from Los Angeles and Mexico who will work to strengthen the bonds between both communities by exchanging the best ideas in trade, science, sports, the arts, climate and energy, and more, to make life better for people on both sides of the border.

EXCHANGING LESSONS WITH INTERNATIONAL CITIES. The Mayor’s Office forges national and international partnerships, from climate action through the C-40 network of global megacities to joining together with other mayors to adopt the targets of the Paris Agreement. Los Angeles is active in city diplomacy through several issue-oriented networks, including: the 100 Resilient Cities network (100RC); the Strong Cities Network; the Mayor's Migration Council; and SDG Leadership Cities.

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