Governor Kitzhaber arrived in Shanghai, China, today to promote Oregon goods and products in hopes of further increasing trade with Oregon's largest export market. He was joined by a delegation of public and private sector Oregonians who are also working to increase business opportunities for Oregon businesses in Asia.
His first stop was at the American Chamber of Commerce, the organization that promotes American businesses in China, where he gave the keynote speech at their breakfast event. After that, he visited COSCO shipping, which has a major presence at the Port of Portland, to encourage the company's continued business with Oregon's primary port. The Governor finished his day with a roundtable discussion with Oregon companies that are already doing business in Shanghai to discuss what Oregon can do to help with exports.
"This has been a great opportunity to connect with businesses that are on the ground here in Shanghai, and let them know about the Oregon goods and services that are available," said Governor Kitzhaber. "This trip has helped us solidify existing business relationships and set the stage for new ones we will now be able to build."
The Governor arrived in Shanghai after spending several days in Beijing, where he attended a signing of an exclusive agreement between Oregon-based CollegeNET, a web-based services company, and Tencent QQ, the most popular instant-message system in China, which has 812 million users. The two companies are collaborating on projects to rank U.S. universities, as well as assess and enhance Chinese students' cultural readiness to study in the United States.
While in Beijing, the Governor met with Madam Liu Yandong, who serves on the Chinese State Council and oversees Hanban, the official Chinese office responsible for providing Chinese language and cultural teaching resources and services worldwide, to discuss the student and educational exchanges between Oregon and China. He also toured the Port of Tianjin, which recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Port of Portland, on Tuesday. The two ports will conduct ongoing staff exchanges to build a strong relationship. On Monday, Governor Kitzhaber met with U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke, whose tenure as Washington Governor overlapped with Kitzhaber's service from 1997 to 2003.