IN Brief

Holcombs, Chambers tour Europe

By: - June 2, 2023 9:00 am

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb on an October trip to Europe. (From Holcomb’s Flickr)

Gov. Eric Holcomb, First Lady Janet Holcomb and Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers will travel to Europe next week, highlighting the state’s transportation, life sciences, technology and energy sectors – as well as fostering international ties over a mutual love of motorsports.

The international trip to Europe will be Holcomb’s 15th and the cost of the trip will be paid by private donations through the private Indiana Economic Development Foundation. Holcomb went to Taiwan and South Korea in August; Germany and Switzerland in October; and Egypt in November.

Those three trips were also covered by the foundation through private donations.

“Indiana’s economic momentum continues to build, and I couldn’t be more energized to share that message with our friends, partners and new business prospects in Europe,” said Holcomb in a statement. “France and Portugal share similar visions for building global economies of the future, and we see many opportunities for innovation and partnerships across high-tech industries like energy and motorsports that will create new opportunities for Indiana and for Hoosiers.” 

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The trio will arrive in Portugal on Sunday on his first official trip to the country. While serving in the U.S. Navy, Holcomb was once stationed at the NATO base in Oerias, Portugal, which he will revisit during this trip.

Dignitaries include U.S. Ambassador to Portugal Randi Levine and Portuguese Secretary of State for International Trade and Foreign Investment Bernardo Ivo Cruz, as well as Lisbon-headquartered Energias de Portugal, which aims to generate 100% green energy by 2030 and operates three Indiana facilities.

The delegation will attend an Art in Embassies program hosted by the ambassador and participate in a Business Energy Roundtable with the American Chamber of Commerce in Portugal.

On Wednesday, the group will leave for France – which Holcomb first visited as governor in 2017 – and meet with U.S. and French government officials, including U.S. Ambassador to France Denise Bauer.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans auto race, in the Pays de la Loire region, will be held on over the weekend on the 100th anniversary of the first 24-hour race. Holcomb will participate in the opening ceremony and festivities, highlighting Indiana’s own motorsports industry.

According to the release, Indiana is home to more than 1,000 foreign owned-businesses, including 47 from France and 3 from Portugal. Thirty-two foreign-owned businesses committed to Indiana in 2022, planning to create 6,400 new jobs and invest $7.25 billion – one-third of that year’s total capital investments.

“Indiana has long been a global business destination, with more than 1,075 foreign-owned companies not just enriching Hoosier communities, but contributing to innovations and quality career opportunities,” Chambers said in a statement. “The continued growth of our economy and future-focused sectors relies on partners here and around the world, and I look forward to fostering these relationships and building new collaborations in France and Portugal.”

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Whitney Downard
Whitney Downard

A native of upstate New York, Whitney previously covered statehouse politics for CNHI’s nine Indiana papers, focusing on long-term healthcare facilities and local government. Prior to her foray into Indiana politics, she worked as a general assignment reporter for The Meridian Star in Meridian, Mississippi. Whitney is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University (#GoBonnies!), a community theater enthusiast and cat mom.

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