Another reason companies are reluctant to begin exporting is that they lack support and guidance, said Brent Rondon, manager of the Global Business Program at Duquesne University's Small Business Development Center. In March, his office will help lead a state trade mission to two Mexican states, Aguascalientes and Jalisco.
Trade missions can catalyze the long distance relationship, but the region could explore other networks of trust. Alan Paul, who writes about the life of an expatriate for the Wall Street Journal, is located in Beijing, China. Just so happens that Paul is connected to the Steelers Nation in Beijing. Here is a direct line from Pittsburgh to the Chinese markets.
Pittsburgh ambassadors live all over the world, connected to foreign networks of commerce and innovation. I'm certain that one Steelers fan would help another, likely pro bono. And you can't beat the established trust that already exists.