ATLANTA — Gov. Brian Kemp is spending the rest of the week in Germany on his second economic development mission since taking office last year.
Kemp left on Tuesday, accompanied by First Lady Marty Kemp and Pat Wilson, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development. They will return to Georgia on Saturday.
The trip will be highlighted by the opening of the economic development agency’s new Europe office in Munich, which is relocating from its old digs into a larger space. The delegation also will visit with large and small German companies with a Georgia presence, including manufacturers with operations in the Peach State.
“Marty and I are honored to travel to Germany – Georgia’s fourth largest export market … to reaffirm our strategic partnership and strengthen business ties across multiple industry sectors,” Kemp said.
There are more than 800 German companies with facilities in Georgia employing more than 36,000, including the North American headquarters of Mercedes-Benz in Sandy Springs and Porsche near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
Georgia exports to Germany in 2018 were valued at $2.29 billion, while Georgia imported $9.8 billion in goods from Germany that year, making Germany Georgia’s No.-2 source of imports.
About 107,800 Germans visited Georgia in 2018 and spent more than $181.1 million, making it a top volume tourism market for the state.
“Georgia’s official presence in Europe for more than 45 years has led to investments from some of Germany’s largest corporations, and these strategic investments have paid off,” Wilson said. “We are grateful to have Governor and First Lady Kemp joining us to open our new, expanded office in the Bavarian region and to deepen our mutual commitment with economic development partners and industries so we can continue to build on this foundation for an even stronger future.”
Kemp’s first overseas trip as governor took place last June, when he spent four days in South Korea meeting with political leaders and executives from companies doing business in Georgia.