Kentucky: Home of horses, bourbon
and businesslike manner with the delegation, not shying away from some sensitive issues that have arisen from recent acquisitions by Chinese companies in the state.
“There are people in this country who worry about companies from this country and that country. Should they worry? Probably not, but they do.
“Sometimes perception becomes reality for some people; it’s our responsibility to communicate to people and make sure that the reality is what reality is, not some people’s misunderstanding of it,” the governor said.
“I see China as a very strong potential partner for Kentucky. I believe this, I have seen this, I have met with people who reaffirm this, I know it to be true,” the governor continued.
The state of Kentucky is most known to Chinese as the home of KFC, but the state, situated in the Southeastern US, is strong in agriculture, auto manufacturing, and horse breeding — it’s home to the Kentucky Derby — and of course, bourbon.
When Tian mentioned that some Chinese companies face challenges due to a shortage of manufacturing labor, Bevin said that under his leadership, Kentucky is pushing pro- business polices such as committing $100 million in the next two years for workforce training and creating a traditional apprenticeship program.
More than 1,100 companies have signed up for the apprenticeship program.
“My goal is to make Kentucky the engineering and manufacturing hub of excellence,” Bevin said.
When discussing incoming President-elect Donald Trump’s possible impact at the local level, Bevin, a Republican, was optimistic that Trump understands business:
“When he says we are going to be protectionists, he caused people to be concerned. I would encourage you look at the actual action he’s taking.”