Governor Pence optimistic on jobs after Japan trip

Governor Mike Pence (R-IN)
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Indiana Governor Mike Pence is finishing up a nine-day economic trip to Japan trying to drum up business for the state. He spoke with Eyewitness News via Skype on Thursday morning to give an update on how things have been going.

A quarter of a million Hoosiers are out of work, and one of Gov. Pence's goals is to create new jobs.

The governor said he heard "very encouraging news" from the parent company of Heartland Automotive.

"With all the growth that's happening with Subaru in Lafayette, they did expect to be making an announcement in the coming months that could mean hundreds of more jobs at their facility in Lafayette and we'd certainly welcome that news," said Pence.

Out of anywhere in the world, many Japanese companies have chosen Indiana to do business with. Eyewitness News asked the governor why the Hoosier state is so appealing.

"Thirty years ago, one of my predecessors actually reached out to Japan, I think understanding that the Japanese people and the people of Indiana had a great deal in common in terms of our long tradition of manufacturing and agriculture. It's really on that basis that successive administrations have reached out again and again to good effect," he said.

Pence said Japanese-owned companies employ roughly 44,000 Indiana residents.