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Executive Director, Rose Blatch, and ITRISA Operations Manager, Lindie Dlodlo, recently attended the 41st annual forum of the International Association of Trade Training Organisations (IATTO) in the USA.

Despite a gruelling 24 hour journey there, and a disturbed night at the forum hotel because a fire alarm went off in the early hours of the morning, they returned well satisfied with the time and effort invested.

Speakers and participants represented countries from around the world (UK, Nigeria, Greece, Mexico, Australia, China, Taiwan, South Africa, etc.) and of course, the USA; while a wealth of interesting trade-related topics were explored.  Highlights included the presentation by the Director General of the UK  Institute of Export and International Trade, Lesley Batchelor, entitled ‘Brexit and Beyond’, a presentation by the Assistant Director of Michigan University’s International Business Center on the US global business portal, Global Edge (well worth investigating – see www.globaledge.com), and a pre-conference visit to the Monsanto Research Centre (the home of GMOs).

Tours of the Des Moines Capitol building with its beautiful gold dome, magnificent art works and stunning law library, as well as a Saturday spent at the nearby German community art and craft region, provided interesting cultural immersion.  The many new friendships struck and business contacts fostered made the forum, all in all, a great experience.