Governor Neil Abercrombie will travel to Asia from October 9 -- 21, 2011 to visit with travel industry leaders and dignitaries in Tokyo, Okinawa, and Beijing. The Governor will be accompanied by Hawai'i Tourism Authority (HTA) officials who arranged part of the trip in an effort to reach out to international markets and strengthen economic relations prior to the upcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit.
"This trip is an opportunity for us to showcase what Hawai'i has to offer to the people of Tokyo, Okinawa, and China," Governor Abercrombie said. "I'm looking forward to expanding on our relationship in those regions from the perspective of not just business, but travel and foreign policy as well."
This will be the first international trip for Governor Abercrombie since taking office. The cost of the trip for the Governor, one staff member, and security is $28,641.98. The Governor will be attending meetings with HTA in Tokyo and Okinawa. He will then attend the National Governors Association (NGA) U.S. -- China Governors Forum in Beijing before returning to Hawai'i on the October 21st.
HTA President Mike McCartney added, "The Asia market is of great importance to Hawai'i's tourism economy, especially Japan, China and Korea, and the Governor's presence will strengthen the strong historical connections that Hawai'i's people and our visitor industry have there."