Parson to embark on fifth trade mission

Julie Smith/News Tribune photo: Missouri Gov. Mike Parson answers questions while addressing members of the media Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023, at the state Capitol.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is traveling to Sweden and Germany for his fifth trade mission.

Beginning Friday, the governor and first lady will travel to Europe to promote Missouri as an ideal place for business investment and expansion. Parson will meet with government officials, diplomats and business leaders in Stockholm, Sweden, and Frankfurt and Stuttgart, Germany, before returning to Missouri March 17.

Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe will be acting governor while Parson is overseas.

"Missouri's global trade partners are valuable to its economy, and we're excited to again promote the Show-Me State as an ideal business location," Parson said in a statement announcing the trip. "Leading Swedish and German companies are already investing and creating jobs right here in our state. This trade mission is another opportunity to strengthen existing relationships while encouraging future investment and growth."

Last year, Missouri exported more than $29 million in goods to Sweden and nearly $680 million in goods to Germany, according to the governor's office.

Electrical equipment and fabricated metal products were among the top Missouri shipments to Sweden, while chemicals and pharmaceutical products were among those highest in demand in Germany.

While in Sweden, Parson will meet with the U.S. ambassador to Sweden, participate in various roundtable discussions and meet with business executives from DeLaval, a farm machinery and equipment company with facilities in Kansas City and Chillicothe.

In Germany, Parson will meet with executives from Merck KGaA, Heraeus and the German airline Lufthansa, among other companies.

The governor's trade missions are funded by the Hawthorn Foundation, a nonprofit focused on Missouri economic development.

The foundation also sponsored the governor's past trade missions to Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Greece, Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Ireland and more.