For Immediate Release - June 11, 2014


Japan Trade Mission Jetro MOU Signing

Governor Patrick has breakfast with industry leaders from Japan and signs the first JETRO MOU in America to further trade relations with Japan at the Enernoc building in Boston. (Photo: Sam Sarkisian / Governors Office)

BOSTON – Wednesday, June 11, 2014 – Governor Deval Patrick today joined officials of the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and CEOs of Japanese companies to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between JETRO and Massachusetts and to promote the strengths of doing business in the Commonwealth. The meeting and MOU signing was hosted at the headquarters of Boston-based energy intelligence software provider EnerNOC, Inc. and is a direct follow-up to the Governor’s successful Massachusetts-Japan Innovation Partnership Mission in December 2013. The MOU, signed by Governor Patrick and the Chairman of JETRO Hiroyuki Ishige, will strengthen trade and investment partnerships between Massachusetts and Japan and promote economic cooperation.

"Today, we take a new step to ensure our mutual prosperity and leverage the talents of our uniquely skilled workforces," said Governor Patrick. "I am proud to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with JETRO to promote further collaboration across our innovation economies. This agreement will strengthen our ties to our partners in Japan and help support job growth in both Massachusetts’ and Japan’s innovation industries."

The MOU further promotes the benefits of Massachusetts’ partnerships in the global arena and will allow the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) and Massachusetts companies to utilize the services and network of JETRO in order to boost collaboration with Japanese companies, thus deepening the Commonwealth’s partnership with Japan.

“Massachusetts continues to be a global hub of innovation due to our comprehensive economic development strategy and key investments in education,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Greg Bialecki. “This agreement builds upon an already strong relationship between Massachusetts and Japan that will only continue to bolster both innovation economies for years to come."

'We are pleased to have been selected as the first state to enjoy an economic partnership with Japan's JETRO,” said MOITI Executive Director Richard Elam. “This will allow MOITI to provide expanded services to Massachusetts companies doing business in Japan and will allow us to capitalize on the vast resources of JETRO to facilitate Japanese companies establishing in Massachusetts; a solid win for Massachusetts and Japan.”

JETRO is a government-related organization that works to promote mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world. Originally established in 1958 to promote Japanese exports abroad, JETRO’s core focus in the 21st century has shifted toward promoting foreign direct investment into Japan and helping small to medium size Japanese firms maximize their global export potential. JETRO maintains a local office in New York in addition to over 70 offices worldwide. This MOU is the first JETRO has signed with a state.

"Today is a new beginning in the history between Japan and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts,” said JETRO Chairman Hiroyuki Ishige. “JETRO and Massachusetts signed a memorandum of understanding, which is our first one with the U.S., to strengthen our business partnership. It should serve as a strong impetus for further creation and development of business opportunities for both Japan and Massachusetts."

"It is a great honor to be part of this event, and to have joined the Governor's trade mission last year,” said David Brewster, president of EnerNOC. “The early success of our JV with Marubeni is illustrative of the potential when firms from Massachusetts and Japan come together. Given the deep history of innovation and commercialization across both economies, I'm confident that we will see many more trans-Pacific collaborations in the future."

During the Governor’s Massachusetts-Japan Innovation Partnership Mission in December, today’s event host, EnerNOC, Inc. and Japan’s Marubeni Corporation announced that the companies are forming a joint venture, named EnerNOC Japan, KK, to provide demand response in Japan. EnerNOC is the world’s largest provider of commercial and industrial demand response. This joint venture builds upon successful past collaborations between the firms in Japan. The two companies also announced their award of a government-sponsored demand response program with Japan’s largest utility, the Tokyo Electric Power Company.

In May, Governor Patrick signed an MOU between Massachusetts and Japan’s Kanagawa Prefecture in the area of the life sciences.  Massachusetts and Japan have over the years developed a mutually beneficial collaboration. According to the Japanese Consulate, over 130 Japanese companies support over 10,000 jobs in Massachusetts and approximately 13,000 Japanese nationals make their home in Massachusetts. In 2013 Japan was Massachusetts’ ninth largest import partner with Massachusetts importing approximately $863 million in goods and services.

Since taking office, Governor Patrick has led coalitions of the Commonwealth’s leaders from business, academic, financial services and cultural communities to 13 countries including China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Israel, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Mexico, Panama, Colombia, Chile and Brazil.  These visits focused on expanding opportunities for job creation in the life sciences, IT, water technology, clean energy, transportation and education sectors to foster opportunities for collaboration between Massachusetts and our global partners. 

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