Governor Mitch Daniels visits Asia

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Kris Kirschner/Eyewitness News

In an effort to land new jobs Governor Mitch Daniels boarded a plane today headed for Japan and South Korea. This is the Governor's second trip to Asia in less than a year.

Packed and ready to go Indiana's top official prepares to board a plane bound for the far east. He hopes to return with hopes of more jobs for Hoosiers in the midwest.

"We feel like Indiana is now competing successfully for new jobs and investment. We're hopeful this trip will be as fruitful as the last one," said Governor Mitch Daniels.

Less than a year ago, Governor Mitch Daniels met with Japanese officials to tout Indiana as fertile ground for business expansion. With pictures from his last trip still fresh in the state scrapbook, Daniels says this second visit builds on those relationships.

"It takes a sustained effort. You have to thank the customers for the business they do now if you expect them to add to that business, siad Governor Daniels.

Toyota, for example, announced expanded operations in Indiana since Daniels last trip. Daniels will once again meet with Toyota officials during his 10 day tour of Japan and South Korea.

As he gathered Saturday at Indianapolis International with some of the more than 50 state and business leaders embarking on the journey, the Republican Governor downplayed the one major company not on his Asian agenda, Honda. Indiana is on the short list of states Honda is considering for a new North American facility.

"We've had every opportunity to put Indiana's best foot forward. This will not hinder Indiana in any way," said Governor Daniels.

Daniels did hint to other economic prospects outside the manufacturing realm.

"One of the companies we'll be calling on is a major food processor, a packer, we think a very good prospect. They'll expand further in Indiana," sais the governor.

And with them, job opportunities for Hoosiers.

Daniels says he expects to make an announcement during his trip about Indiana's hardwood industry. He'll also check in on Hoosiers soldiers stationed in South Korea.