Office of the Governor News Release: Governor Ige heading to Japan to promote economic development, renewable energy, and travel to Hawaiʻi

Posted on May 6, 2022 in Latest Department News, Newsroom

HONOLULU – Gov. David Ige is leading a Hawaiʻi delegation to Japan to encourage and expand travel to the Hawaiian Islands as the world slowly emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The governor will meet with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida; the Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry; the Minister of Foreign Affairs; and travel industry partners to reestablish the relationship between Hawaiʻi and Japan.

“Japan is our most important international source of travelers to Hawaiʻi, and we look forward to rekindling our relationship. Overall, international travel is much less than it was pre-pandemic. As our state focuses more on destination management over getting more visitors to the islands, we recognize that Japanese visitors are a priority for us because they tend to engage in the community, they’re respectful of the Hawaiian culture and of our environment. We would like to welcome them back to the islands,” said Gov. Ige.

The governor will also meet with Japanese leaders to discuss economic development and renewable energy.

“Japan is committed to the United Nation’s sustainable development goals which includes clean energy. They want to learn from Hawaiʻi, which is a leader in renewable energy, and the first state in the U.S. to set a 100% renewable energy goal. Both Hawaiʻi and Japan would benefit from joint research, dialogue, and exchange, and working together to achieve our goals more quickly and efficiently,” Ige said.

Gov. Ige will be accompanied by First Lady Dawn Amano-Ige; Mike McCartney, director of the Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism; John De Fries, president & CEO Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority; George Kam, chair, Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority; and House Speaker Scott Saiki.

The governor is scheduled to return to Honolulu on Friday, May 13. Lt. Gov. Josh Green will serve as acting governor.

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Media Contacts:

Jodi Leong

Deputy Communications Director/Press Secretary

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0043

[email protected]

Cindy McMillan

Communications Director

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0012

Mobile: 808-265-7974

[email protected]