Mohammad Nazir, chairman of the West Midlands Minority Ethnic Business Forum, believes the service will help with the development of international trade links between the region and parts of the world where there are strong historic and cultural links.
“An important part of our work has been to help promote trade with parts of the world where we can take advantage of the strong historic and cultural links enjoyed by our minority ethnic communities,” said Mohammad Nazir.
“Working with UKTI one of the areas where there have been successful trade missions is the Caribbean. Philadelphia can serve an important hub as it offers direct links to the Caribbean and will make business travel easier.”
“The Forum is keen to see expansion of the international network from Birmingham airport in order to make travel easier to key centres in the Indian sub-continent, the Middle East and the Caribbean. All of these are important markets where our minority ethnic business community can give the West Midlands an edge.”
Earlier this year a delegation from Jamaica led by Prime Minister Bruce Golding visited Birmingham to discuss business opportunities between the Island and the West Midlands.
UF Airways, the fifth largest carrier in the United States, will operate the daily service that is due to start in May 2009.
The West Midlands Minority Ethnic Business Forum is an independent body that provides strategic advice to the regional development agency Advantage West Midlands and other agencies.