Cabinet for Economic Development
KENTUCKY TO HOST CHINESE TRADE DELEGATION
Delegation to meet with Kentucky lumber producers
FRANKFORT, KY – Kentucky has been chosen to be among a few select U.S. states to host an upcoming delegation of Chinese lumber buyers. Officials from the Cabinet for Economic Development’s International Trade Division will accompany representatives from 10 companies traveling across the state May 16–18, to meet with Kentucky lumber producers.
“Our goal is to match Kentucky companies with potential buyers in the Chinese market, increasing Kentucky exports,” said Gene Fuqua, Acting Secretary of the Cabinet for Economic Development. “Last year Kentucky’s exports reached a record level, contributing nearly $17.23 billion to the state’s economy.”
As part of the delegation’s trip, the Cabinet for Economic Development, in conjunction with the Kentucky Forest Industries Association and Kentucky Division of Forestry, will also conduct a networking reception to facilitate one-on-one meetings with Kentucky lumber producers. This year’s buyers are in the market for both hard and soft woods to supply China’s growing furniture and wood flooring markets.
“We are thrilled to have Kentucky’s timber industry recognized in this way,” said Governor Ernie Fletcher. “We welcome the opportunity to develop and enhance our trade relations with China.”
With assistance through the Kentucky China Trade Center in Beijing, the group was recruited by the China Chamber of Commerce as part of a larger trade delegation across multiple industry sectors organized by China’s Vice Premier Madame Wu Yi. Madame Wu led a buying delegation to the U.S. in 2006 that purchased commodities totaling USD 16.2 billion.
The trip is seen as a positive sign that China is moving to address its long-standing trade surplus with the United Sates and thereby curb criticism of the trade imbalance.
“Kentucky has pursued international trade relationships aggressively and successfully,” said Mark Peachey, Director of the Cabinet for Economic Development’s International Trade Division. “We want the world to know that Kentucky’s products can compete anywhere. It makes sense that if the Chinese are looking to increase imports, they would look at our state.”
The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development currently operates international offices in China, Europe, Japan, South America and Mexico to assist in promoting direct investment to the state and to increase trade between Kentucky companies and international markets. For more information about the Division of International Trade, please visit http://www.thinkkentucky.com/kyedc/internationaltrade.aspx.
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The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development is the primary state agency in Kentucky responsible for creating new jobs and new investment in the state. New business investment in Kentucky in 2006 totaled more than $3.4 billion with the creation of over 18,500 new jobs. Information on available development sites, workforce training, incentive programs, community profiles, small business development and other resources is available at www.ThinkKentucky.com.