8-22-12 St. Louis Business Journal
by Greta Weiderman
Former U.S. Sen. Kit Bond and the World Trade Center St. Louis are planning a trade delegation trip to China in December, the most recent in a string of efforts to deepen the region’s ties with China, the world’s fastest-growing large economy and Missouri’s third largest export market.
“Expanding on the concept of St. Louis as the Gateway to the East can be a major economic development win for Missouri’s businesses, people and economy, and trade missions to China like this fall trip will grow past successes and build new ones,” said Bond, also a former Missouri governor and now chairman of Kit Bond Strategies.
Denny Coleman, president and CEO of St. Louis County Economic Council, said recent trade missions have been successful because of the high-level connections companies have made.
“These trade missions are about growing relationships,” he said. “We can never underestimate the value of taking the time to make these personal connections.”
The trade trip to China will include officials from businesses and universities in the St. Louis region, including companies of all sizes in sectors like agriculture, manufacturing, transportation, energy, construction, chemical, medical, financial, technology and education. Companies interested in participating in the China trade trip can find more information here.
The trip will include stops in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Hangzhou the first week of December for officials to meet with civic and business leaders.
The World Trade Center St. Louis and consulting firm Kit Bond Strategies took a trip to Jakarta, Indonesia, in January to seek trade opportunities and education ties.