APEC arrives in SF, turning the spotlight on the city

Receptions welcoming the APEC summit to San Francisco on Monday signal that this gathering of world leaders has started. 

Those attending range from world leaders to Bay Area business owners. 

One reception took place at the Ferry building. It was a private event with many public officials.

An organizer said the event welcomed finance ministers from various countries attending the APEC Summit.

It's a private gathering held by Visa. 

Mayor London Breed gave welcoming remarks for the reception.

"My message is loud and clear. We want to ensure that relationships continue to develop, that the opportunities continue to flow and that we see a thriving economy here in San Francisco," Breed said. 

"This is the perfect place, the perfect backdrop,if you're talking about trade investment , sustainability. If you're talking about inclusion , the digital economy," said APEC Ambassador Matt Murray as he addressed the crowd at a reception held at Fermentation Lab restaurant in Japantown.

At the Fermentation Lab Restaurant, women dressed in colorful, ethnic  attire representing various countries greet guests.

"We expect 20,000 people to come to San Francisco, creating a $50,000,000 economic impact to the city. We really need it post COVID," said California Treasurer Fiona Ma who co-hosted this reception with GlobalSF.

The nonprofit partnered with the city to attract and recruit foreign investments. .

GlobalSF's founder Darlene Chiu said this event is an opportunity to do that. 

"You're having a drink. You're grabbing something to eat or hey, do you have a couple of minutes. That's where you get to know each other, find out what's going on and actually find a way to work together."  

Many elected officials, business owners, and consulate officials from various countries, including Germany, which is not an APEC member.  

"What happens here and around the Pacific is very important and has many repercussions on a global scale," said Oliver Shramm, German Consulate General in San Francisco.  

"Different cultures, different countries talking to each other. They're in a city like San Francisco, the better it is for the challenges that we're facing," said Paula Tejeda, owner of Chile Lindo Restaurant

Back at the Ferry Building, one woman attending the reception said she hopes APEC will have a lasting impact.

"I want to see more, better understanding and trust-building throughout the United States and Asia," said Lydia So, who is a SFMTA Commissioner.

Amber Lee is a reporter with KTVU.  Email Amber at Amber.Lee@Fox.com or text/leave message at 510-599-3922. Follow her on Facebook @AmberKTVU,  Instagram @AmberKTVU  or Twitter @AmberKTVU.