Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is leading a business and civic delegation on a 10-day trade mission to Japan, South Korea, Vietnam and China starting July 23, Garcetti’s office announced on July 20.
The delegation of nearly 60 business and civic leaders will make stops in Tokyo in Japan, Seoul in South Korea, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and Hong Kong in China, spending roughly two days in each city.
According to the announcement, trade last year between Los Angeles and Japan was valued at $40 billion; South Korea at $25 billion; and Vietnam at $19.5 billion. Also, in 2017, Los Angeles accounted for 27 percent of all U.S.-Hong Kong trade.
Also, the announcement said, Los Angeles County has the largest Asian American population of any county in the United States, numbering 1.5 million, or about 15 percent of the county’s total population. And last year, the county welcomed 1.1 million visitors from China, 342,000 from Japan, and 315,000 from South Korea. Los Angeles also shares strong people-to-people ties with the Pacific Rim. L.A. County has the largest Asian American population of any county in the United States — numbering 1.5 million, and making up 15 percent of the county’s total population. Last year, L.A. County welcomed 1.1 million visitors from China, 342,000 from Japan, and 315,000 from South Korea.
“Los Angeles is a global city with partners and interests all over the world — and we have a special bond with our neighbors on the Pacific Rim,” Garcetti said in the announcement. “Tourism and trade with Asia are integral to our local economy, international investment creates jobs for Angelenos, cultural exchange brings our people closer together, and cooperation on the biggest challenges will determine the future of the planet.”
Three dozen business leaders will accompany Garcetti on the trade mission, including the heads of three major business groups: Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Maria Salinas, Central City Association Chief Executive Jessica Lall and Los Angeles Business Council President Mary Leslie.
Other business executives slated to be on the trip: Brad Cox, senior managing director with Trammell Crow Co.; Virginia Grebbien, chief of staff for Parsons Corp.; Rex Hong, senior vice president, Cathay Bank; Jerry Neuman, partner with downtown law firm DLA Piper and an executive board member of the Los Angeles Chamber; Nadine Watt, president of real estate firm Watt Cos.; Janet Lamkin, California president for United Airlines; and Stephen Cheung, president of World Trade Center Los Angeles.
Several leaders of city agencies are also set to participate in the trade mission, including: Gene Seroka, executive director of the Port of Los Angeles; Deborah Flint, chief executive of Los Angeles World Airports; Ernest Wooden, chief executive of the Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board; and councilmembers Joe Buscaino, Paul Krekorian, and David Ryu.
Economy, education, energy and transportation reporter Howard Fine can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @howardafine.