The Midwest U.S.-Japan Association is scheduled to meet in Omaha early next week and Iowa’s governor will be among six governors from the region to attend.
Naoki Ito, the Consul-General of Japan in Chicago, will deliver opening remarks at the conference Monday morning.
“I’m really hoping that through this conference our partnership, our friendship will grow,” Ito said during a recent visit to Omaha.
Other speakers include Japan’s ambassador to the U.S., the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s undersecretary for trade and the CEO of Kikkoman, the world’s largest producer of soy sauce. The conference will also feature government officials from Japanese provinces.
“So this is an opportunity to develop a two-way business (and) economic dialogue,” Ito said.
The governors of Kansas, Indiana, Michigan, Nebraska and Wisconsin will be there. According to Governor Kim Reynolds’ public schedule, she will attend the opening session on Monday.
The latest federal data shows Iowa exported a billion dollars worth of raw commodities and products to Japan last year. Japanese-owned companies based in Iowa employed 6000 people in 2017 according to the International Trade Administration.