The Summit of the Americas (SOTA) takes place every three years and brings together heads of state and other government officials from across the Western Hemisphere to discuss various opportunities and challenges confronting the region. The 2022 SOTA kicked off this week in Los Angeles, California, where the U.S. Government hosted foreign governments, business leaders, youth, and civil society in a series of discussions that focused on "Building a Sustainable, Resilient, and Equitable Future."

As a lead sponsor of the CEO Summit of the Americas (CEO Summit), the official private-sector forum for the SOTA, our team was in Los Angeles meeting with government and industry experts to explore how we can work together to help break down barriers to trade, better support small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), and reduce environmental footprints throughout the region. Amazon sellers like Mr. Tortilla (U.S.), By Mexico (Mexico) and Lenna's (Brazil) attended. Ecommerce has helped these entrepreneurs grow their businesses and they shared their stories.

Ronald and Anthony  hold their products in front of a Mr. Tortilla promotional sign.
Photo by ERIC THAYER
Anthony Alcazar and Ronald Alcazar strive to make Mexican food healthier through their business, Mr. Tortilla.
 Santiago Lichi and Regina Velasco, co-founders of By MĂ©xico, stand back-to-back smiling.
Santiago Lichi and Regina Velasco, co-founders of By MĂ©xico, a merchandising company oriented to praise the Mexican culture and take it all around the world.
Leticia Soares poses for a picture with her hand on her hip.
Leticia Soares, founder of Lenna's, a brazilian manufacturer of briefcases, backpacks, and bags with timeless design and unparalleled quality.

We see enormous opportunity to launch public-private partnerships around what we call "ecommerce for growth" to help entrepreneurs throughout the Americas maximize their potential as ecommerce sellers. And, we understand that participating in events like the Summit of the Americas will help move that conversation forward.

More than half of everything sold in Amazon’s store is from independent sellers, and the vast majority are small and medium-sized businesses.

Amazon participated in multiple key events and activities throughout the week:

Amazon leaders provide training at the SME Virtual Trade Academy

Amazon's Global Selling team participated in the subject-matter expert (SME) Virtual Trade Academy to work with entrepreneurs across the Western Hemisphere and demonstrate how ecommerce can help businesses grow, create jobs, and find new markets for their products. Learn more.

Amazon joins Mexico in a new MOU on small business empowerment

Sarah Jane Gunter, vice president of LATAM Consumer at Amazon, joined Mexico's Secretary of Economy, Tatiana Clouthier, in signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that focuses on promoting small business through ecommerce. The MOU supports collaborating on cross-border ecommerce, domestic ecommerce, and promoting handmade items from craftspeople and builds upon our already strong partnership with the Mexican government. Learn more.

Regional efforts drive growth through ecommerce

Gunter moderated a discussion with Clouthier that focused on how the public and private sectors can collaborate to better support SMBs and accelerate economic, sustainable, and inclusive growth throughout the region. Watch now.

Amazon sellers joined International Trade Centre Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton in a discussion on how SMBs can leverage digital tools to grow their businesses and find new customers. Watch now.

Amazon joins the Climate Resolute Coalition

Kara Hurst, vice president of Worldwide Sustainability at Amazon, announced that Amazon will serve as a founding member of the Climate Resolute Coalition, a multi-stakeholder organization focused on advancing women's economic empowerment and climate solutions in global supply chains. The commitment enhances our ability to promote gender equity throughout the Americas while supporting President Biden's National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality, which emphasizes the disproportionate impacts of climate change on women and girls. Learn more.

Amazon joins 100K CLIMA initiative

Hurst announced that Amazon will serve as a founding member of the U.S. State Department's 100K CLIMA initiative to help expand access to innovative, climate-focused workforce readiness programs in the U.S. and Latin America on critical climate change research and advocacy initiatives. Learn more.