Eric Garcetti

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti meets in his City Hall office with Mexico City officials. (Michael Finnegan / Los Angeles Times / February 18, 2014)

Mayor Eric Garcetti is planning to travel next month to Mexico City on the first of what he says will be many international trade missions to promote Los Angeles.

Garcetti met Tuesday in his City Hall office with a delegation of Mexico City officials to lay groundwork for his four-day visit, scheduled to start March 2.

Traveling with Garcetti will be top managers of the city’s harbor and airport departments, along with executives of the L.A. Tourism and Convention Board. The L.A. Area Chamber of Commerce is putting together a team of business leaders to accompany them, according to aides to the mayor.

Garcetti's official travel as a city councilman drew scathing criticism in last year's mayoral campaign from Wendy Greuel, his leading opponent. But as mayor, Garcetti has vowed to go abroad frequently to promote tourism and encourage foreign companies to do business in Los Angeles.

Salomón Chertorivski Woldenberg, Mexico City’s economic development secretary, told Garcetti at Tuesday’s meeting that a formal economic cooperation agreement should be ready for him and his counterpart in Mexico City to sign during his visit.

Their conversation covered a wide range of topics, including public transit, sanitation, climate change and film production.

“In pharmaceuticals, we have a lot we could think of doing together,” Chertorivski Woldenberg told the mayor.

Garcetti inquired about Mexico City’s popular bike-share program, asking how it was funded. Los Angeles has had trouble setting up such a program.

Garcetti also recommended a favorite book to his Mexican visitors: “What if Mayors Ruled the World: Dysfunctional Nations, Rising Cities.”

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Twitter: @finneganlatimes

michael.finnegan@latimes.com