The team, sponsored by the Special American Business Internship Training program, a project funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration, will start its tour Sunday at Monumental Valley.
Other stops include locations in Shiprock, Farmington, Upper Fruitland and the Window Rock, Ariz., capital of the Navajo Nation. The journey ends Tuesday.
"We want to share our programs, share what we do in terms of economic development," said Henry Silentman, senior economic development specialist at the Shiprock Regional Business Development Office. "We also want to feel out possible partnerships. Even though that's not expected, it would be nice."
The team will tour the Office of the President and Vice President and the Navajo Council Chambers on Monday. Team members are expected to learn about taxes and enterprises and visit the Navajo Chamber of Commerce before traveling to the Shiprock area.
On Tuesday, the team will visit the Shiprock Pinnacle, then tour businesses including the Navajo Tribal Utilities Authority office in Shiprock and Northern Edge Navajo Casino in Upper Fruitland.
Team members will spend Tuesday afternoon at San Juan College in Farmington, where they will meet with a business partnership panel and an
"We will talk about what we've done here," said Margaret McDaniel, former director of San Juan Economic Development Service. SJEDS changed its name this week to the Four Corners Economic Development Foundation, and McDaniel will serve as director of retention and expansion.
She worked with SJEDS for 19 years.
"I think we want to go in with a blank slate," McDaniel said of the Special American Business Internship Training program visit. "We can talk about what we've done to assist economic base businesses to expand and create new high-wage jobs. We will share what we know here, our personal experiences."
The Special American Business Internship Training program began in the early 1990s as a way to engage the then Soviet Union through trade, the International Trade Administration's website states.
The program helps American organizations create relationships and build on existing partnerships with peers and customers in the former Soviet republics. More than 4,200 business leaders have participated in the program since its inception, the website states.
Silentman said foreign business leaders may find significant similarities in business development when they tour the Navajo Nation.
"These are people who are working on small business development in their countries," he said. "They will fit in with what we do with small businesses."
A total of 21 business leaders from nine countries will arrive on Navajo soil Sunday. The team also is bringing two interpreters, a program coordinator and a bus driver, Silentman said.
Represented countries on the tour include Azerbaijan, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia and Uzbekistan.