For Immediate Release:
November 11, 2016
Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov | Virginia Economic Development Partnership: Suzanne Clark, (804) 545-5806, Sclark@yesvirginia.org
Governor McAuliffe to Lead Trade and Marketing Mission to the Pacific Rim
~Mission to encourage new investment in the Commonwealth and increase exports~
Governor Terry McAuliffe will lead a 10-day trade and marketing mission to the Pacific Rim from November 13-22. The Governor will be accompanied by First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe, Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore, Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Basil Gooden and representatives from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and Virginia Tourism Corporation. The delegation will visit Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Australia.
The Governor and his delegation will participate in nearly 60 meetings over the course of the mission. The Governor will meet with senior business executives and government officials to bolster the export of Virginia goods and services, as well as promote Virginia’s desirable business location advantages and tourism assets. Governor McAuliffe and team will also promote trade opportunities for Virginia agricultural and forestry products including: soybeans, oysters, lumber, wine, beer and specialty food products.
“With more than 90 percent of the world’s consumers living outside the United States, our international trade and marketing missions are central to our efforts to build the new Virginia economy,” said Governor McAuliffe. “These missions enable us to promote Virginia’s pro-business environment, including our world-class products and producers, ports and airports, and highly-skilled workforce, which are all fundamental to attracting and retaining foreign investments. We will continue to ensure Virginia’s private-sector companies have the resources to grow and diversify their customer base, bringing revenue back to the Commonwealth and build their businesses with investments in the global marketplace.”
In addition to one-on-one business meetings, Governor McAuliffe will host four receptions to showcase Virginia’s economic strengths, its agriculture, food and beverage assets, and great quality of life to prospective corporate investors and travelers. This mission marks the Governor’s 21st trade and marketing mission, and his first to Singapore and Australia.
Virginia is home to more than 70 Japanese-affiliated firms as well. These publicly announced projects represent more than 950 jobs and $578 million in investment in Virginia. Japan is one of Virginia’s largest export destinations, ranked 6th for overall exports of Virginia goods and services and 5th in agriculture and forestry exports in 2015. Japan has been a strong tourism partner for Virginia and the United States for decades, with more than 3.7 million Japanese visiting the country last year.
There are four South Korean-affiliated firms with business operations within the Commonwealth, representing nearly 100 jobs and $91.4 million in investment. In 2015, South Korea ranked 7th among largest export destinations for Virginia goods and services and 8th for Virginia agriculture and forestry exports. More than 1.7 million South Koreans visited the United States in 2015, making South Korea tourism a potential market to grow for Virginia.
In addition, there are four Singaporean-affiliated firms located in Virginia. Singapore was Virginia’s 13th largest export destination for exports of goods and services in 2015. Virginia has identified Singapore as a key growth market for the exports of goods and services, as well as for tourism
Virginia is also home to 11 Australian-affiliated companies, representing 85 jobs and more than $103.10 million in investment. In 2015, Australia ranked 15th among Virginia export destinations for goods and services. Australia is a key growth market for Virginia tourism. The United States is ranked 3rd in outbound markets for Australian tourists, with almost 1.5 million Australian residents traveling to the United States in 2015.
Agriculture and forestry exports from Virginia totaled $3.19 billion in 2015, the second highest ever. Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim are targeted growth markets for Virginia agricultural and forestry exports with more than $238.3 million in exports to the region in 2015.