Governor Barbour Leading Trade Mission to Japan
“Invest in Mississippi,” meetings with Toyota
suppliers on agenda
From: Office of the Governor
Filed 7/9/07 GCN
Governor Haley Barbour and a delegation of Mississippi business leaders
left for Japan today, where they will tout the benefits of investing in
Mississippi for prospective suppliers of the Mississippi Toyota plant.
The Governor and officials of the Mississippi Development Authority will
host an “Invest in Mississippi” seminar on July 12 in Nagoya, Japan, to
encourage Japanese business leaders, especially those in the automotive
supply area, to take a look at opportunities in the Magnolia state. The
delegation has also scheduled visits with a number of other companies that
may have an interest in locating or expanding in Mississippi.
“Working with Japanese business leaders has proven very productive,
resulting in new, better-paying, higher-skilled jobs for Mississippians,”
Governor Barbour said. “I intend to showcase all of the reasons that make
Mississippi a solid investment for Japanese companies.”
Governor Barbour; Gray Swoope, MDA’s Executive Director; Aubrey Patterson,
of Tupelo, chairman of the Mississippi Partnership for Economic
Development; and Dennis Cuneo, Counsel for Arent Fox LLP, will be featured
speakers at the seminar. Cuneo was the prime consultant for Toyota during
the company's site selection process for a new auto assembly plant in
North America; the process resulted in the selection of a site near Tupelo
and an initial 2,000 jobs when the plant begins production of the Toyota
Highland SUV by 2010.
In addition to presentations about Toyota’s recent announcement to locate
in Mississippi, presenters at the seminar will share details about the
state’s business climate, workforce development and training programs, and
high quality of life.
“Mississippi has a strong relationship with Japan that Governor Barbour
and others have worked hard to nurture,” Swoope said. “With this event, we
want to build on those ties by highlighting the benefits our state can
offer Japanese investors.”
A number of Japanese companies including Toyota, Nissan, Calsonic Kansei,
Marubeni, Yoruzo, Unipres and others have operations or subsidiaries
located in the state. Mississippi officials want to encourage other
Japanese firms to take a look at the business advantages available in
This trade mission marks Governor Barbour’s third trip to Japan since he
has been in office. The Mississippi delegation will return to the U.S.