Governor Pete Ricketts, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA), and Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) launched the Governor’s Council for International Relations at the 2nd Annual Governor’s Summit on Economic Development. This new council is bringing together Nebraska business, agriculture, and education groups to work together to expand overseas trade opportunities and develop new international partnerships for the state.
“International trade and engagement is a crucial part of our state’s long-term growth. Whether it takes the form of beef exports, inbound foreign direct investment, or student and cultural exchanges, Nebraska’s relations overseas bring great benefit to the entire state,” said Governor Ricketts. “My administration is continuously pursuing new strategies for expanding international markets, attracting new investment, and building the state’s profile overseas, and we are committed to maintaining a competitive edge in a global economy. The Nebraska Governor’s Council for International Relations will help us take the next step to grow trade for Nebraska by leveraging our combined resources to grow current investments in Nebraska and explore prospects for future partnerships.”
At the event, the Governor outlined three goals for the council:
Develop comprehensive long-term strategies to expand existing and develop new trade relationships.
Support growing partnerships and identify new opportunities to collaborate with overseas counterparts.
Leverage our combined resources to grow current investments in Nebraska and explore prospects for future investment.
“In 2015, Nebraska exported $6.4 billion dollars’ worth of agricultural goods accounting for over 25 percent of all agricultural cash receipts,” said NDA Director Greg Ibach. “The Governor’s International Trade Council will create synergies between agriculture’s efforts to promote trade, the University’s international outreach, and the business community’s interest in foreign direct investment.”
“This Council will be a critical resource as we work to develop Nebraska’s strategic efforts to foster international relationships and increase trade,” said DED Director Courtney Dentlinger. “This dynamic group of leaders will help position us to better compete for increased investment in industries such as advanced manufacturing, biofuels, and value added agriculture.”
This group will be comprised of top-level leaders from organizations heavily involved in Nebraska’s international efforts. Participating groups and individuals include:
Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce
Lincoln Chamber of Commerce
Midwest International Trade Association
Nebraska Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Nebraska Corn Growers Association
Nebraska Department of Agriculture
Nebraska Department of Economic Development
Nebraska Department of Education
Nebraska District Export Council
Nebraska Ethanol Board
Nebraska Farm Bureau
Nebraska Pork Producers
Nebraska Secretary of State John Gale
Nebraska Soybean Board
Nebraska Tourism Commission
University of Nebraska
U.S. Commercial Service – Omaha
Additional individuals and groups have been invited to participate, and will be announced at a later date.