North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper to lead economic development trip to Tokyo

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper will travel this coming week to Tokyo with state officials and economic development leaders to promote global investment in the Tar Heel state, his office announced Friday.

Cooper will lead a North Carolina delegation to the annual Southeastern United States/Japan Economic Development Conference from Oct. 11-15. The Democratic governor said he plans to meet with Japanese business leaders and government officials to strengthen existing relationships and recruit new jobs to North Carolina. The trip comes as Charlotte, North Carolina, prepares to host next year’s conference.

“On this trip, I will recruit new businesses with better paying jobs for North Carolina, while having discussions with and personally encouraging industry leaders to attend our conference next year so they can see for themselves what our great state of North Carolina has to offer,” Cooper said in a statement Friday.

Cooper will be joined in Japan by state Secretary of Commerce Machelle Baker Sanders, Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina Executive Director Chris Chung and other economic development leaders. Cooper made one previous trip to Tokyo while in office in 2017, according to his office.

The Republican-controlled General Assembly, meanwhile, is convening next week to act on some bills and could soon unveil proposed boundaries for the state’s congressional and legislative districts that would be used for the 2024 elections. Although Cooper’s office said the governor will remain in regular contact with his Cabinet secretaries and continue to direct state business, the state constitution would give the lieutenant governor, Republican gubernatorial candidate Mark Robinson, temporary authority to act in his stead.

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