About the CaliBaja Mega-Region Initiative
The Mega-Region Initiative is a long-term economic development strategy partnering San Diego County, Imperial County and Baja California in Mexico for global competition. The Cali Baja Bi-National Mega-Region Initiative brings together businesses, civic and government leaders to assess the advantages and challenges of doing business in the bi-national region, and ultimately market the region internationally.
The Mega-Region Initiative began in 2008, when San Diego Regional EDC and Imperial Valley EDC recieved funding from the Economic Development Administration (EDA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, to market the bi-national mega-region. Awarded $225,000 grant to develop this bi-national strategy, it was the first of its kind by the Federal Government.
Over the course of the year, more than two hundred stakeholders from across the entire bi-national region engaged in a series of facilitated workshops, in-depth interviews, meetings and discussions. In addition to the strategy, stakeholders were involved in developing the name, logo and tag line and marketing collateral materials.
Founding sponsors of the Mega-Region Initiative include
Bank of America,
County of Imperial, Imperial Irrigation District (IID),
County of Imperial, Imperial Valley Economic Development Corporation (IVEDC),
Imperial Valley Joint Chambers of Commerce,
San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG),
San Diego County Water Authority,
San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, and
San Diego Workforce Partnership,.
A Bi-National Partnership Emerges
In June 2011, six regional economic development organizations (EDOs) signed the Marketing “Rules of Engagement” Memorandum of Understanding. Designed to establish the ground rules for marketing together as CaliBaja, a commitment was made to work on several concrete efforts including participating in marketing and trade shows, updating the CaliBaja website and developing the unique bi-national GIS asset map. This has since evolved into a more formal partnership of the three regions comprised of the following EDOs:
Tijuana EDC, Ensenada EDC, Economic Promotion Commission of Tecate or COPRETEC, and Industrial Development Commission of Mexicali or CDIM.
Since the end of the original EDA grant, the initiative has been funded largely through private and public sector. The initiative has continued with support of private and public stakeholders including Bank of America, CDT, County of San Diego, EW Corporation, Imperial County Workforce Development Board, Imperial Irrigation District, Kyocera, Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch, San Diego Gas & Electric, San Diego State University, San Diego Workforce Partnership, Solar Turbines, Unified Port of San Diego, and Walmart Foundation.
To learn more about CaliBaja, please contact one of the economic development partners: