Gov. Terry Branstad today announced he will lead a trade delegation, including four governors, to China in mid-April. This brief trip to China was at the invitation of the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and will include meetings with senior government officials, current and potential business partners, a U.S. -- China Governors Forum and celebration events to recognize Iowa's 30th anniversary of a sister state with the Chinese province of Hebei.
"Our state has a long and unique history with China's new President, Xi Jinping," said Gov. Branstad. "President Xi visited our state in 1985 and saw firsthand that Iowans are hardworking and sincere people who take pride in the work they do and the products they produce. He never forgot the people and the memories from his first trip to Iowa. We hope to foster our unique relationship with President Xi and the people of China leading to stronger economic partnerships benefiting both the people of Iowa and the people of China."
The Governor and his delegation will spend four full days in China and visit the cities of Beijing, Tianjin, Baoding City and Shijiazhuang.
"International trade is extremely important to the people of Iowa as it supports tens of thousands of jobs right here in our state," said Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds. "China is an important trading partner with Iowa, importing $3.2 billion worth of goods last year. We want to foster our trading partnership with China to provide our safe and reliable products to feed their population of over 1.37 billion people."
The following governors will participate in the trade mission led by Gov. Branstad:
Gov. Eddie Calvo (Guam)
Gov. Bob McDonnell (Va.)
Gov. Scott Walker (Wis.)
The following organizations will be represented on the trade mission with Gov. Branstad:
Iowa Economic Development Authority
Iowa Corn Growers Association & Iowa Corn Promotion Board
Iowa Farm Bureau
Iowa Soybean Association
CMB Regional Centers
Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.
Sukup Manufacturing Co.
The University of Northern Iowa
Iowa State University
University of Iowa
Iowa Sister States