A group of officials in the eastern part of the state were in Japan for a whirlwind trip to foster investment in Idaho.
Earlier this month, leaders with the state departments of agriculture and commerce, the University of Idaho and business group Regional Economic Development for Eastern Idaho visited Japan. The trip came together after Japanese aluminum company Sakae Casting opened its first U.S. location in Idaho Falls last autumn.
Jan Rogers, the CEO of the economic development group, was on the trip. She says the Idaho delegation’s itinerary was packed and productive.
“We met with fifteen companies while we were there, and we’re anticipating a visit from a number of those companies in July,” she says. “We also met with a number of government officials. We met with two mayors, one vice governor and the president of Tokyo University of Technology.”
As Rogers puts it, it’s all about relationships. She says the Japanese companies that would likely visit Idaho in the summer are small to medium in size.
“They’re looking for a ‘front door’ into the U.S. market, and what we hopefully have done is opened our front door in Idaho to their business,” Rogers says.
Idaho Falls has had a Sister City relationship with Tokai, Japan for more than 30 years.
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