INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT & RESOURCES
The Upstate SC Alliance specializes in providing support and resources to guide international companies seeking to establish and expand operations within the United States of America. A number of resources are available to assist employees and families from other countries who choose to call the Upstate home.
- Market Entry – Whether you are seeking market entry through FDI, business partnering, or a landing pad, we can help.
- Team of Advisors – From incorporation to environmental regulations to incentives negotiation, the Upstate SC Alliance can assist you in assembling a team of professional advisors to help you launch successfully in the U.S. market. The region has a long history of working with foreign companies to position them for both initial and long-term success.
- Visas – Information on visa requirements for travel in the United States is available through the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about travel and business visas and student or immigration requirements online, or let us connect you to local providers who are experienced in this field.
- Site selection – Our business recruitment team can conduct a search of available properties based on your specific criteria.
- Connections – To federal, state, local and private sector agencies and stakeholders
Hear from AWL Automation, an automotive supplier, on how Upstate resources provided support for a successful launch of their operations.
State & Regional Resources
The Upstate SC Alliance works closely with the South Carolina Department of Commerce, which has established international offices in Europe, Japan, India, and China, in addition to an export support division. Please let us know if we can connect you with one of these international offices.
The South Carolina Ports Authority administers Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 38 in the Upstate, provides a secure and profitable platform to compete effectively in domestic and global markets. The FTZ program is available to all U.S. based importers/exporters and can be established at warehouses/distribution centers and manufacturing facilities. Read more about the benefits of FTZs.
Our region is home to Upstate International, a non-profit organization whose mission is to empower people and businesses of all nations to thrive in the Upstate by connecting them with programs, events and initiatives that foster the dynamic exchange of international cultures and ideas. Upstate International offers services to help orient and guide families relocating to the Upstate. They also offer language classes, currently in eight languages. And, Upstate International is helping create connections though a variety of international clubs.
Upstate International also promotes events that increase awareness, broaden horizons, and inspire appreciation for the many different expressions of cultures in our world. Their initiatives include a World Affairs Council, as well as a variety of culturally themed events introducing residents to the sights, tastes, sounds, and traditions of other countries.
Sister Cities & International Academic Ties
The Upstate has a strong participation in Sister Cities International programs through Greenville Sister Cities International, which maintains relationships with Bergamo, Italy; Kortrijk, Belgium; and Tianjin, FTZ, PRC.
Additionally, our academic institutions such as Clemson University, one of the country’s leading science- and engineering-oriented public research universities, maintain connections to industry leaders throughout the world.
The Upstate is also home to several schools with international ties, such as:
- Ecole Francaise Bilingue (The Bilingual French School), which was created by Michelin in 1974 and is accredited by the French Ministry of Education and provides educational opportunities for grades 9-12 with classes taught in French.
- German School Upstate SC, to provide cultural and language training for German students and for American students preparing for the Advanced Placement German test.
- Supplementary schools are available for Chinese, Korean, and Japanese residents of the Upstate to learn both their native cultures and language education.