Gov. Pete Ricketts is in Japan, on his second trade mission to that country.
As part of the trade mission, Ricketts is attending the Midwest U.S.-Japan Association annual conference.
“This will be an opportunity for me to be in front of about 200 or 300 Japanese business executives, talking about why Nebraska is the place that they want to invest in our country,” Ricketts tells Nebraska Radio Network.
The Midwest US-Japan Association is comprised of nine Midwestern states, including Nebraska. It seeks to bolster international relationships with companies interested in investing in the central United States.
The annual conference comes to Omaha for its 50th year next year.
Ricketts notes Nebraska beef sales have increased enough to kick in higher tariffs, something he would like addressed in trade talks with Japan.
“What that demonstrates is there’s a demand for our beef in Japan and what we have to do is make sure we’re negotiating with the Japanese so we don’t hit those high tariffs that frankly really don’t do anything to protect their domestic market and really just advantages countries like Australia,” according to Ricketts.
Ricketts will make visits to Tokyo, Shizuoka, and the Kansai region. Department of Economic Development Director Courtney Dentlinger and Department of Agriculture Assistant Director Mat Habrock are with the governor along with members of the state’s business and agricultural sectors.
Japan is Nebraska’s third largest trade partner, the largest outside North America. Japan also invests in Nebraska, with Japanese businesses investing $4.4 billion since 2010.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]