MN Trade Office, Greater MSP Open Joint China Office

The two organizations will aim to deepen Minnesota’s economic ties with China through the new office, which opened during Governor Mark Dayton's 10-day trade mission to the country.

In an attempt to boost the state’s trade relations with China, economic development organization Greater MSP and the Minnesota Trade Office on Wednesday opened a joint office in Shanghai.

Governor Mark Dayton, who is in China on a 10-day trade mission, announced the opening of the new office with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Fifty local agricultural, industrial, and academic leaders joined Dayton on the trade mission, which will end Sunday.

While Greater MSP and the Minnesota Trade Office will share the Shanghai office space, their focuses will be different.

Greater MSP will aim to increase Chinese investment in Twin Cities companies, boost its member companies’ trade in the country, and increase awareness of the state.

Meanwhile, the trade office—which is part of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development—will focus on increasing Minnesota exports to China and support government relations between the state and the country.

China is already the second-largest export market for the state; the country received $2.3 billion worth of goods and services from Minnesota last year.

Greater MSP CEO Michael Langley said in a statement that the organization has set a goal of adding 100,000 new jobs in the Twin Cities by 2016, and the new China office will be an integral part of that growth. Greater MSP is a collaboration of local business and community leaders whose mission is to promote the 13-county Twin Cities metro area to potential investors from around the world.

“We are excited to more actively engage with the China market and believe that our region’s strengths will greatly benefit our Chinese partners while continuing to stimulate our regional economy,” he said.