Gov. Steve Beshear visits India on third foreign economic development trip this year

bmusgrave@herald-leader.comSeptember 12, 2012 

Gov. Steve Beshear listened to fellow speakers during the grand opening of the Center for Applied Energy Research in Lexington, Ky., on Aug. 15, 2012. The 43,000 sq ft laboratory is environmentally friendly. Currently, research is being done in the fields of biofuels and lithium batteries among others. Photo by Pablo Alcala | Staff


FRANKFORT — Gov. Steve Beshear arrived in India on Tuesday on a seven-day economic development trip, the third overseas trip he has taken since May.

Beshear's office said the governor is in India to promote Kentucky and spur economic development. This is Beshear's third visit to India since he took office in December 2007. The previous trips have paid dividends, state officials said.

Last year, Flex Films, an India-based packaging company, announced it would create 250 jobs in Elizabethtown. According to Beshear's office, Flex Films is investing $180 million in Kentucky.

Beshear, in a written release, said he thinks there are more India-based companies that might want to expand in or relocate to Kentucky.

"We've already established strong ties with several Indian companies and are very optimistic about our ability to position the commonwealth as a prime location for Indian business owners looking to enter the U.S. marketplace," Beshear said. "I believe we are on the forefront of securing many investment opportunities from India, and our ability to make personal connections with key decision-makers is a large part of our success."

Beshear traveled to Taiwan and Japan in May. In late July, he was in France and Germany. Both trips were designed to lure more foreign investment to Kentucky, whose economy is struggling to regain footing after four years of sluggish growth.

According to figures provided by Beshear's office, about a third of all capital investment and 22 percent of all jobs announced in 2011 were from foreign-owned businesses.

Kentucky has 420 internationally based companies representing 30 countries. Those companies employ about 76,000 people. Of the 420 companies, eight are Indian.

Beshear is not the only elected official overseas this week. Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is in the Middle East educating soldiers about absentee voting.

Beth Musgrave: (502) 875-3793. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog:

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