Historically Japanese executives and their companies has been much more comfortable concentrating in California on the Pacific Rim rather than the “inland” and East Coast states. We have a small but successful Japanese population dating back generations. CA is not considered a prejudiced state for Asians. The Japanese have surely felt particularly out of place in the South.
Apparently that undeniable Golden State preference has given way to economic reality. Texas (among other states) is FAR better for a company’s bottom line than Taxifornia.
EXCERPT: “At least 175 Japanese projects have translated into $19 billion in direct investments in Texas since 2003, according to the Texas governor’s office. Some recent investments include:
* Toyota is relocating its U.S. headquarters from California to Plano, building a $300 million campus that will employ nearly 40,000 in 2017.
* Tractor maker Kubota Corp. is investing $51 million to move its headquarters and about 350 jobs from California to Grapevine.
* Mitsubishi Heavy Industries plans to build a $100 million compressor manufacturing plant in Pearland that’s expected to employ 100 people by 2016.
* Celanese Corp. and Mitsui & Co. are planning an $800 million ethanol plant in Clear Lake in a joint venture.
* Osaka Gas Co. Ltd. and Chubu Electric Power Co. recently invested $1.2 billion in a natural gas export project near Freeport.”
Japan hopes for closer ties with Texas
Vernon Bryant/Staff Photographer
Toyota is one of a number of Japanese companies with investments in Texas.
Yasuo Saito is visiting Texas this week to talk Japanese.
Not literally. He’s part of a five-person Japanese delegation here to spread the word about their country and forge a closer relationship with Texas.
“It’s never been more important to maintain and strengthen the alliance between the United States and Japan,” said Saito, Japan’s former ambassador to France, Russia and Saudi Arabia and consul-general in Atlanta.
The visit comes amid the 70th anniversary of the U.S.-Japan postwar alliance and efforts by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to improve the profile of the beleaguered Japanese economy, which has seen six recessions in two decades.
Abe launched the “Walk in America, Talk on Japan” project a year ago to promote the country and his openness to increased trade and investment. “Abenomics” — his aggressive economic stimulus plan — helped Japan emerge from recession late last year, but growth still is slow.
The Japanese delegation to Texas — two former government officials, a college student, a former Toyota worker and a junior college teacher — are speaking about topics including Japanese economics, culture, technology and the Asia Pacific region.
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