Governor Neil Abercrombie will return to Hawai'i tomorrow after having spent nearly two weeks in Asia, where he participated in numerous meetings to strengthen relationships in Tokyo, Okinawa, and Beijing.
"It was an extremely productive trip that will benefit Hawai'i as we look to strengthen our economy," Governor Abercrombie said. "Building upon our relationships with these countries is important not just for our visitor industry but our longstanding cultural connections as well."
The Governor was also among a delegation of six governors that participated in the National Governors Association (NGA) U.S.-China Governors Forum. The Forum was co-convened by NGA and the Chinese People's Associations for Friendship with Foreign Countries. The Forum was established to strengthen a subnational dialogue between the two countries and focused on economic development and job creation.
Hawai'i Tourism Authority President and Chief Executive Officer Michael McCartney who traveled with the Governor in Beijing returned from China this afternoon. McCartney said, "Governor Abercrombie led a series of successful briefings that were very positive for Hawai'i and U.S. foreign affairs. This trip has helped to further advance our relationships, especially in China, which is an emerging market for our visitor industry."
Photos of the Governor's trip can be accessed here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/neilabercrombie/sets/72157627872287544/