MON AM News: Talking Trade explores U.S. nonparticipation in the RCEP; UW College of Engineering to host quantum computing seminar

— In the latest “Talking Trade” episode, hosts UW-Madison Prof. Ian Coxhead and M.E. Dey & Co. President Sandi Siegel explore why the U.S. did not join the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. 

The world’s largest international trade pact, dominated by the People’s Republic of China, was signed in November.

The video podcast explores trade issues affecting Wisconsin and the Midwest.

See the show, supported by the Center for East Asian Studies at UW-Madison: 

— UW-Madison’s College of Engineering is hosting a free online seminar Friday morning for quantum computing experts. 

The event, “In the Spotlight: Materials, Processing, and Devices for Next Generation Quantum Computing,” features three of the school’s researchers and their respective quantum research developments.

Jason Kawasaki, Ying Wang and Daniel Rhodes will each discuss a variety of possibilities for enabling the future of quantum computing relating to semiconductors, electronics, machine learning, optoelectronics, data storage, thermal and energy management, information science, and super connectivity. 

Their presentations will be followed by a Q&A session. 

From 9-11 a.m., this virtual event is part of the NEAR Spotlight Series which aims to bring engineering faculty and industry together to forge new partnerships that will accelerate pathways between engineering discoveries and practical applications.

“The promise of faster, more precise, and more efficient technologies in communication, sensing, computing, energy, imaging and surveillance — to name a few — is fueling the race for quantum innovation,” said event spokeswoman Angela Pakes. “But the road to next-generation quantum-enabled technologies in the real world will take research, materials development, device creation, and manufacturing innovation.”

Pakes is the assistant director for New Technology Directions at The Grainger Institute for Engineering, a division for the College of Engineering, that works to incubate and accelerate engineering research and facilitate connections with industry.

Register here: 

— New quarantine guidelines from the Department of Health Services for close contacts of those exposed to COVID-19 go into effect today.

Using CDC guidance, DHS now allows that people who do not develop symptoms can end their quarantine after completing day 10 of quarantine without testing or after completing day seven of quarantine and receiving a negative test result (molecular or antigen) that was collected within 48 hours of the end of quarantine.

“For many, there may be barriers that make quarantining for a full 14 days extremely challenging,” said DHS Secretary Andrea Palm. “While a shorter quarantine carries additional risk of spreading COVID-19, when done responsibly, it can make quarantining easier for more Wisconsinites.”

People must continue to monitor for symptoms for the full 14 days. If symptoms develop following the end of quarantine, people are advised to immediately isolate, contact their health care provider and get tested.

See the updated guidance: 

— This weekend brought 7,622 COVID-19 cases and 94 deaths from the virus in Wisconsin. 

The seven-day average for daily cases fell to 3,925 from 4,102 on Friday, according to the Department of Health Services’ coronavirus dashboard. The seven-day average peak was 6,563 cases on Nov. 18. The new cases brought the cumulative case total to 412,177.

Wisconsin’s COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to decline, now at 1,502 patients and rivaling late October’s census. The latest Wisconsin Hospital Association coronavirus update also shows 325 intensive care patients, another low since late October. 

The Alternate Care Facility at State Fair Park is treating six coronavirus patients. The West Allis field hospital has treated 136 total patients since opening on Oct. 14.

The seven-day average for single-day COVID-19 deaths rose to a record 60 deaths on Saturday and fell to 59 yesterday. The previous record was 55 deaths per day on Nov. 25. The state’s death toll is now at 3,719. 

Eight counties make up about half of the state’s total coronavirus fatalities: 

*Milwaukee, which added five deaths to its total over the weekend, bringing its toll to 775;

*Waukesha, which reported 10 more deaths for a total of 232 fatalities;

*Racine, which has 197 deaths after adding seven over the weekend;

*Kenosha, which added three deaths to its count the past two days for a total of 156;

*Brown, which after adding two fatalities, now has 148;

*Outagamie, which reported two more deaths for a total of 136 deaths;

*Marathon, which added three deaths and now reports 133; 

*and Winnebago, which reported four deaths for 127 deaths total. 

Click here for more coronavirus resources and updates: 

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— An upcoming and virtual event will examine trade issues under a new president, including the USMCA and the ongoing China-U.S. trade conflicts.

Thursday’s lunch hour webinar, “Trade Reset: How a New Washington, D.C. Administration May Change Trade Policy Near and Far” features Midwest trade experts and a top Canadian official as panelists: 

* U.S. Rep. Ron Kind, a Dem on the House Ways and Means Committee;

* Neal Kemmet, CEO of Ace Ethanol in Stanley;

* Wayne Robson, acting Consul General Canadian Consulate, Chicago;

* Sandi Siegel, president, M.E. Dey & Co., Milwaukee and co-host of “Talking Trade”

Register in advance for the event, from noon to 1 p.m. CT, here:

— The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. is organizing a virtual global trade venture that will connect Wisconsin exporters with potential buyers, distributors and other partners in Mexico.

The goal of the event is to help Wisconsin companies continue to grow their exports even in the current economic downturn and while international travel is limited. 

The event will consist of online meetings taking place from Feb. 22-26. This is the third virtual venture organized by WEDC. The first event connected Wisconsin companies with potential partners in Germany, and the second one in South Korea.

“Trade continues to be important during the time of COVID even if we need to take a different or virtual approach,” said Katy Sinnott, WEDC vice president of global trade and investment. “It is even more important now during uncertainty that companies continue their exporting efforts.”

Mexico is the world’s 15th-largest economy and the second-largest export market for Wisconsin exports in 2019. Although the pandemic has cut into the economic growth that had been predicted for Mexico in 2020, it continues to experience stable economic growth, and the USCMA has opened new opportunities in Mexico for U.S. companies, according to WEDC.

Leading export categories from Wisconsin to Mexico include industrial machinery, electrical machinery, vehicles and parts, paper products, plastics, agricultural products, and medical and scientific instruments. But WEDC encourages Wisconsin companies from a broad range of sectors to attend its trade venture.

WEDC encourages interested companies to register early so Wisconsin’s trade office in Mexico has time to customize matches and set up meetings between companies and potential partners. 

Learn more about the event and register now through Dec. 18: 


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– Inside Look At Wisconsin Christmas Tree Farms 

– Wisconsin Farm Bureau delegates set policy, select winners 

– State Cheese Output Drops for Third Straight Month 


– Northwestern Mutual CEO: Driving racial equity through innovation 


– US employers add 245,000 jobs in November as rebound loses steam 


– Schools Try To Fill Child Care Gap Amid Virtual Learning, Though COVID-19 Prompts Closures 


– Imagine MKE launches $700,000 arts and culture grant program with county CARES Act funds 


– These occupations top the list of most in-demand jobs in Wisconsin 


– Commercial printer Arandell to exit bankruptcy via sale to private equity firm 


– Lawmakers inch toward compromise as Biden confronts slowing recovery 

– Wisconsin Supreme Court Rejects Third Election Lawsuit, Dealing Another Blow To President Trump 


– First Amazon Fresh grocery store in Chicago area opening Dec. 10 


– Wisconsin DNR: Wolf Hunt Will Resume Next November 


– Brookfield tech company receives investment from San Francisco private equity firm 


– Woodspring Suites plans first Wisconsin hotel on Bradley Road 

– Overture Center says its lost $12 million in revenue in 2020, now getting some relief 


– Southwest Airlines furloughing nearly 7,000 employees, including technicians in Milwaukee 


– Advocate Aurora’s Cristy Garcia-Thomas elected to WEC Energy Group board of directors 


<i>See these and other press releases: </i>

Arandell: Finalizes sale agreement, successfully exits Chapter 11

Thedacare: Shares initial vaccine distribution

NFIB: Wisconsin owners cited labor quality as top business problem