McDonnell opens Virginia marketing office in Shanghai

Gov. Bob McDonnell today expanded Virginia’s international economic development presence with the opening of the Commonwealth’s new marketing office in Shanghai.

The governor announced the opening of the new office during a press conference at the JW Marriott in Shanghai.The governor is currently on a two-week job creation and marketing mission to Japan, China and Korea.

“Virginia has a compelling story to tell, and we must tap into the Chinese market if we want to be successful in today’s global economy,” McDonnell said.”Success in China will mean good jobs for Virginians.A strong economic relationship with China will grow the Commonwealth’s economy and that is why I committed in my campaign to establish this office.Unfortunately Virginia has failed to properly devote resources in recent years to market to China, putting us behind other states in competing for investment opportunities. That is no longer the case.”

Hailey Fong, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership’s Director of International Investment, China, is now based in the new office in Shanghai.Fong has worked for VEDP for 10 years, promoting trade and investment in the greater China region.

VEDP has also hired Joyce Hua as Director of Trade Development, China. Hua has 10 years of experience working in foreign trade, marketing and project management. She is familiar with multi-culture environments, especially with Sino-American relationship and culture exchange. Hua is experienced in consumer research management, along with marketing communication, planning and execution. She will be an important addition to the Virginia export team, working to develop new trade opportunities for Virginia companies.

VEDP has conducted multiple trade missions with Virginia companies to China. At least eight current companies in the Virginia Leaders in Export Trade program are actively pursuing the Chinese market and have used VEDP resources to assist with their strategy in China.

With the establishment of this office, Chinese companies will have the opportunity to work directly with Virginia as they establish their “Go Global” strategy, and Virginia companies will work closely with Chinese companies to establish new products and services to serve Chinese consumers.

China’s annual economic output has surpassed that of Germany and Japan, and is now the world’s second-largest economy. China is Virginia’s 2nd largest export destination. Virginia exports to China grew eight percent in 2010 to reach a value of $1.2 billion. In the year 2000, when China was Virginia’s 14th top export destination, Virginia exports to China were valued at $197 million. Top 2010 exports from Virginia to China are integrated circuits, plastics, synthetic fibers, industrial machinery, and aluminum, mainly waste and scrap.

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