You are here: Home › Why Japan matters to Indiana according to the head of Knox County, Indiana

Why Japan matters to Indiana according to the head of Knox County, Indiana

By Ryan Cardenas
-    Feb 20, 2024
Credit : GMI Post

“Why are focused visits like these vital to Indiana, and particularly to Southern Indiana?” This was the question posed by Knox County Indiana Economic Development CEO Christopher Pfaff in a LinkedIn article posted on February 18, 2024 as he shared his experience when he joined a week-long trade mission in Japan.

GMI POST highlights three points the CEO made in that article wherein he spoke about the importance of trade mission trips. 


1. Mission trips help sustain Indiana’s positive relationships with its Japanese investors.


Knox County Indiana Economic Development CEO Christopher Pfaff

According to Pfaff, Indiana has the highest concentration of foreign direct investment in the United States from Japanese companies. He explained that mission trips maintain positive relationships with Japanese companies and executives that have already invested heavily in Indiana.

Pfaff also points out that foreign-owned companies in Indiana employ more than 200,000 workers across the state. That number includes the more than 300 Japanese companies in Indiana, which employ more than 55,000 people.

“Many of these Japanese companies are international brand names, including Subaru Corp., Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co., and Hitachi Ltd. As one can imagine, there exists intense competition from many states and regions that would love to have these companies and jobs in their area. Through consistent performance and delivery, Indiana is winning. The state has fashioned and earned a stellar reputation for successful investments,” said Pfaff.


2. Mission trips enable continuous improvement (kaizen)


“Traveling to see and meet with Japanese investors adds important dimensions and nuances,” said Pfaff, who added that by visiting world-leading urban centers, economic developers and public officials experience firsthand how their foreign counterparts build competitive cities.

Pfaff also praised Japan’s collective ability to effectively weave technology, business, climate conservation, and culture into their urban settlements, buildings, and workplace environments. 


3. Missions trips show that you care


“The Knox County local government participation also sends an important message: Our local officials care enough about the substantial multi-million-dollar investments in southern Indiana that they will personally take the time, energy and funds to visit in-person,” said Pfaff.

According to the CEO, the good impression and the good relationship that you are able to create through physical interactions are important considerations that cannot be understated.

“For certain, economic development, and especially international economic development, is a contact sport,” Pfaff said.

Business opportunities in Latin America for Japanese companies

Thanks to Texas' proximity to the emerging markets of Central and South America, several major Japanese companies with significant investments in L...

The Evolving Military Balance in the Taiwan Strait

Panelists discuss the risk of an armed conflict between the United States and China over Taiwan and how the United States should adapt its defense ...

Young Professionals Briefing: The Future of Democracy Around the World

Panelists discuss democratic backsliding, the rights of marginalized populations living under authoritarian regimes, and the prospects for and obst...

TWSE: Cultivating Growth

When gauging a country's economic prospects, analysts first study the historical performance of its financial market and activity that characterize...

Philippines' top EdTech startup secures Series A funding as it boosts reach and engagement

Edukasyon, the leading education technology platform in the Philippines, recently closed its Series A financing round, joined by Asian and European...

Japanese carmakers: A vital part of the U.S. economy

Over nearly four decades, Japanese-brand automakers have built up a vast American presence. It has made a cumulative manufacturing investment of ab...

Casino slot manufacturer attributes success to hard work, vision, and dedication to core values

Japanese gaming giant Konami has invested heavily in Las Vegas, setting up a huge head office in the city from where it develops and markets indust...

Reaffirming a commitment to create equal opportunity

Tracing its origins back more than a century, LHAG has nurtured a reputation for excellence and expertise in dispute resolution, international arbi...

Malaysia: A fresh start

Ten months since historic elections that rocked the nation's political landscape, Malaysia, once again headed by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, i...

latest special Reports:

More Special Reports: more...

Upcoming Reports from

  • Global Media is your partner in reaching a powerful international audience through high-level economic reporting.

    Our ambition is to highlight under-reported developments and opportunities around the world, and allow leaders in these regions and sectors to take their message to the highest global level. We partner with top media to communicate with the world’s most powerful audiences. We specialize in communication and branding initiatives that help our clients effectively get their messages to their existing and potential partners. We achieve results for our clients by introducing them and their initiatives to an audience of elite international business and government leaders.

    Global Media Inc. is an independent media agency with offices in Hong Kong and Canada. GMI has more than a decade of experience in the writing, researching, and production of promotional country reports, with media partners from East Asia to North America. We have teams worldwide that develop country and thematic reports on the latest economic trends and developments.

    We are a media partner of Foreign Affairs,the United States’ most influential publication, published by the New York-based Council on Foreign Relations.

    Nearly a century old, there isn’t a more influential or higher-reaching publication in the United States than Foreign Affairs. The journal is ranked #1 in influence by U.S. opinion leaders in a recent nationwide study conducted by Erdos and Morgan, the premier business-to-business research firm. Their findings place Foreign Affairs ahead of all media, both print and broadcast, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and The Washington Post.


    “We were extremely impressed with how efficient, well-coordinated, responsive and reliable the Global Media Inc. team was. We owe them a lot for their professionalism. We were very pleased with the outcome, and the article was very well-written. We hope to have an opportunity to work with Global Media Inc. again in the near future.� – Japan Airport Terminal Co. Ltd.
    “The Global Media team’s professionalism was excellent. Their team was great and always gave us the right suggestions and information. The product was excellent, and we were very happy to have such a great opportunity working with their excellent team.â€� – National Graduate Institute of Policy Studies (GRIPS)
    “We were honored to be chosen as one of the good universities in Japan. This article conveyed Seigakuin University’s educational ideals and the message from President Akudo. The advertisement was conspicuous and gave a good impression that Seigakuin nurtured students to contribute to world peace. We really appreciated what Global Media Inc. had did for us.â€� – Seigakuin University

    Whom we have featured:

    • Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard
    • Australian Foreign Affairs Minister (and former Prime Minister) Kevin Rudd
    • Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
    • Qatari Minister of International Trade and Industry Dato’ Sri Mustapa bin Mohamed
    • Japanese Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Yoshiaki Takaki
    • Taiwanese Foreign Minister Yang Chin-Tien
    • Taiwanese Finance Minister Lee Sush-Der
    • Taiwanese Economic Affairs Minister Shih Yen-Shiang
    • Taiwanese National Science Council Minister Lee Lou-Chuang,
    • Taiwanese Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications Yeh Kuang-Shih
    • Taiwanese Political Deputy Minister of Education Dr. Lin Tsong-Ming
    • Indonesian Ambassador to the United States Dr. Dino Patti Djalal
    • Indonesian Investment Coordinating Board Chairman Gita Wirjawan
    • Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III
    • Philippine Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile

Join our newsletter

Sign up for our weekly newsletter to get the latest news and updates directly to your inbox.