Building Bridges CEA seeks to strengthen U.S. industry ties to
Karen Chupka, vice president of events and conferences, participated in the trade mission's Shanghai press conferences and meetings with China-based industry associations. The difficulties in getting a U.S. visa "was a theme that was echoed in a lot of our meetings," she says. "Once they do get a visa that first time, it makes it so much easier."
At press time, Johnson reported that the U.S. embassy in Beijing designated a consular officer in its visa section to be a tradeshow specialist. "We see this as a positive focus," he says.
In addition, Johnson says the U.S. embassy in Beijing is forming a pilot program that would facilitate the processing of tradeshow-related visa applications. CEA is also considering incorporating anti-counterfeiting measures into its invitation letters that Chinese attendees use to obtain U.S. visas to attend the show. The Beijing embassy plans to start the pilot program in the fall with a few trade shows, one of which CEA expects will be the 2006 International CES.