LANSING, Mich. - Gov.
Rick Snyder will lead a delegation of state and local officials and economic
developers on a trade mission to Italy and Germany that leaves Michigan on
Saturday, March 17, and returns Saturday, March 24.
long-standing ties with German and Italian companies have meant good jobs here
and we look forward to further strengthening these highly productive
relationships," Snyder said. "We will deliver the message that Michigan is more
business-friendly than ever and this is an opportune time to invest in a state
that is reinventing the ways we can help them grow their businesses."
After arriving in Turin, Italy on Sunday, Snyder will hold business meetings
with senior executives of leading Italian companies, including Fiat, FIAMM
S.p.A. and CoMEC. Joining him in the discussions will be Oakland County
Executive L. Brooks Patterson, Michael Finney, president and CEO of the Michigan
Economic Development Corp., and a number of economic development leaders from
The delegation will fly to Stuttgart, Germany on Tuesday,
where members will participate in a forum at the Fraunhofer Institute for
Chemical Technology. The state's presentation will focus on advanced electric
storage due to Michigan's industry leadership position in North America.
The Partnership Forum brings together decision makers from research,
industry, universities and government, for in-depth discussions on building
stronger university and industry partnerships. The Fraunhofer Institute has
pioneered such partnerships in Germany, and globally, to accelerate product and
process commercialization of new technologies. The Fraunhofer Institute is
recognized as a model of innovation and is reported to have inspired a $1
billion federal initiative now being considered in Washington.
will devote much of his trip in Germany to meetings with senior level executives
from a number of automotive and alternative energy companies, including BASF,
Bosch, Würth Group, and Daimler, as well as government officials.
addition to the state delegation, local economic development agencies, counties
and communities will participate in some or all of the travel, including Oakland
and Wayne counties, the city of Auburn Hills, the Detroit Regional Chamber, the
Right Place Inc. of Grand Rapids, Southwest Michigan First of Kalamazoo, and
Lansing Economic Area Partnerships. Michigan State, Wayne State, Grand Valley
State universities and University of Michigan, will be represented in some
investment mission events.
German and Italian business relationships with
Michigan traditionally have been strong, and state business leaders and
economists say the growth opportunities for Michigan are enormous:
- Michigan exports to Europe totaled $6 billion in 2011, with
transportation equipment and chemicals accounting for nearly half of the
Last September, Snyder led
an eight-day trade mission in Asia to promote business opportunities in Michigan
to major company executives and to meet with Japanese, Chinese and Korean
government officials. In the six months since, two new business developments
have been announced as results of Snyder's mission to
- Hyundai America Technical Center Inc. (HATCI) in January
announced it will expand its operations in Michigan by building a world-class
Hot/Cold Weather Dynamometer Test facility at its Superior Township location
south of Ann Arbor. The company will invest $15 million to construct the
facility and add 50 full-time jobs over the next five years. The state of
Michigan will fund construction of a new power substation at the Superior
Township location that will improve the power output to the
- Nexteer Automotive last October announced it will
invest $150 million in its Saginaw County operations, retaining more than 1,000
jobs. The Nexteer investment will include expansion and upgrade of testing and
validation capabilities, including an overhaul of the Nexteer Vehicle Evaluation
Center. Chinese state-owned parts manufacturer AVIC Automobile Industry Holding
Co. in March 2011 acquired a 51 percent stakes in Nexteer's owner, Pacific