(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Governor Mike DeWine met with Shinsuke Sugiyama, Ambassador of Japan to the United States today at the Ohio Statehouse. Joined by Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Development Services Agency, Kristi Tanner of JobsOhio, and Tsutomu Nakagawa, Consul General of Japan, and Soichiro Suzuki, Second Secretary at the Embassy of Japan, the group discussed Ohio’s long-standing relationship with Japan and the upcoming business development mission from Sept 8-13, 2019.
“Japan is Ohio’s top international investor. Companies such as Honda, Kao, and Hitachi Healthcare Americas have facilities in Ohio. It is important that we build on these successes and find new opportunities for collaboration,” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine.
Japan was Ohio’s fifth-largest export market for Ohio products in 2018 when Ohio firms exported more than $1.67 billion worth of products to Japan. There are 852 Japanese establishments that employ 72,860 employees, totaling more than 27 percent of foreign investment in Ohio.
Governor DeWine will lead the upcoming business development mission scheduled from September 8-13, 2019. Anchoring the mission will be Governor DeWine’s participation in the 51st Midwest U.S.-Japan Association annual conference in Tokyo. He also will have several business meetings with Japanese companies including Honda and Kao Brands. Governor DeWine will visit Saitama Prefecture, Ohio’s sister state in Japan. Next year marks the 30th anniversary of the Ohio-Saitama sister-state relationship. Governor DeWine plans to explore ways to build on the strong ties that have been established with Saitama. J.P. Nauseef, JobsOhio president and chief investment officer, and Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Development Services Agency, will join the Governor to support the mission.