Kristina Slattery
Kristina Slattery
Business Development

Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development

Contact Us

All form fields are required.

Andy Beshear
Old Capitol Annex
300 West Broadway
Frankfort, KY 40601
Jeff Noel
2024-07-05 01:28:20
For Immediate Release
Brandon Mattingly

Gov. Beshear Taking International Economic Development Trip To Bring New Jobs to Kentucky

Kentucky group to meet with existing, prospective companies in Japan, Korea

FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 5, 2024) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear announced that he is taking an economic development trip to bring new jobs to the state by traveling late next week to Japan and the Republic of Korea, where he will meet with leaders at existing Kentucky companies as well as businesses considering future investment in the United States.

The visit comes after the Governor’s record-breaking first term, which included the highest private-sector investment figure of any administration in state history. Since the start of Gov. Beshear’s administration, 88 projects have been announced by companies based in Asia, representing nearly $13 billion investment and 13,000 new jobs.

Kentucky has nearly 540 internationally owned operations that employ more than 117,000 people statewide. The commonwealth is home to 200 Japanese-owned facilities that employ 47,000 people and seven Korean-owned facilities that employ 1,200 people.

“There is no better place to do business in the United States than right here in Kentucky, and this visit will allow us to share that message directly with business leaders in Japan and Korea,” Gov. Beshear said. “We look forward to meeting with existing employers and developing new relationships that will bring good jobs to the commonwealth.”

The Governor will be joined by First Lady Britainy Beshear, Cabinet for Economic Development Secretary Jeff Noel, Transportation Cabinet Secretary Jim Gray and other members of the executive branch as Team Kentucky meets with companies and trade organizations to determine future investment and job-creation opportunities in the state.

The Kentucky delegation will meet with the Keidanren Committee on U.S. Affairs along with several existing Kentucky employers and potential prospects.

Gov. Beshear and Secretary Gray will also be meeting with the National Police Agency of the Republic of Korea to sign a Driver’s License Reciprocity Agreement. This agreement allows employees relocating to the United States for an extended period to have effective transportation to jobs and to ease their transition to the United States.

Team Kentucky’s economic development mission to Asia builds on the best four-year period for economic growth in state history.

Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced more than 1,000 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling nearly $32 billion in announced investments, creating more than 54,700 jobs. 

The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 and 2023 topped $26 in consecutive years for the first time.

Gov. Beshear has announced some of the largest economic development projects in state history, which have solidified Kentucky as the electric vehicle battery production capital of the United States: Ford Motor Co. and SK On’s transformative $5.8 billion, 5,000-job BlueOval SK Battery Park in Hardin County; AESC’s $2 billion, 2,000-job gigafactory project in Warren County; Toyota’s $1.3 billion investment in Scott County; and INFAC North America’s $53 million investment in Taylor County, among others.

The Governor’s administration also secured the largest General Fund budget surplus and Rainy Day Fund, as well as the most jobs filled in state history. Last year, Kentucky set the record for the longest period with the lowest unemployment rates in state history.

Kentucky also secured rating increases from major credit rating agencies Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings, and Moody’s Investors Service upgraded Kentucky’s credit outlook from stable to positive.

In March, Site Selection magazine ranked Kentucky third nationally and first in the South Central economic development projects per capita in its 2023 Governor’s Cup rankings. In April, Site Selection placed Kentucky second in the South Central region and top 10 nationally in its 2024 Prosperity Cup ranking, which recognizes state-level economic development agencies for their success in landing capital investment projects.

Gov. Beshear announced a “Supply Kentucky” initiative with the goal of boosting job growth, reducing costs and providing more security in the supply chains of our Kentucky companies.


Do Business In KY