INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Governor Eric Holcomb, Adjutant General R. Dale Lyles and Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers will lead an economic development trip to Slovakia and Israel beginning March 27.
While encouraging collaborative opportunities to advance innovation, investment and strengthen strategic relationships, the delegation will demonstrate humanitarian support at a critical time for the geopolitical situation in the region.
“Secretary Chambers and I are motivated to strengthen relationships with world leaders and job creators while forging new partnerships to advance economic growth and further diversify our vibrant economy,” Governor Holcomb said. “This visit also provides an opportunity to do what is right and offer support to Hoosier through humanitarian efforts to Ukrainians who have found refuge in Slovakia and the greater region. As Hoosiers, we continue to do our part from Indiana, but we have the opportunity to prove our support and commitment to Ukrainians whose lives are directly impacted by the Russian invasion.
Governor Holcomb, Sec. Chambers, Adjutant General Lyles and First Lady Janet Holcomb will depart for Slovakia on Sunday, March 27 and complete the trip in Israel before returning to Indiana on Saturday, April 2.
The trip comes weeks before Indiana hosts the first World Economic Summit, which will host delegations from Slovakia and Israel.
The delegation will build on the Indiana-Slovakia and Indiana-Israel ties and help inspire future economic partnerships, propel innovation and advance the global economy.
Adjutant General Lyles representing the Indiana National Guard will strengthen his partnership and support with Slovakia and Israel.
The First Lady will support the economic development and humanitarian aspects of the trip while strengthening cultural ties.
In 2018, Governor Holcomb and the Slovak Minister of Economy signed a Memorandum of Understanding that shares best practices and identifies partnership opportunities in advanced manufacturing, defense, automotive, energy, agricultural technology, information technology and cybersecurity.
Also in 2018, through a memorandum of understanding between IEDC and the Israel Innovation Authority, Indiana and Israel continue to work to identify 21st century challenges in agricultural biosciences, life sciences , technology, cybersecurity and connect the respective companies to work collaboratively on the development of innovative solutions.
Indiana and Slovakia share a trade relationship, exporting more than $1 million worth of goods to Slovakia, including chemicals, computer and electronic products, machinery, petroleum and coal products, and hardware transport.
Slovakia is also home to several Indiana-based companies, including Berry Global Group, Eli Lilly and Company, and Green Cubes Technology.
The Indiana National Guard also shares a more than 25-year partnership with Slovakia through common military training and security cooperation goals.
Additionally, Indiana and Israel share a trading relationship, with Indiana being the fourth-largest exporter of goods to Israel in the Midwest and the 19th in the United States.
In 2021, Doral, an Israel-based renewable energy developer, inaugurated one of the largest solar farms in the United States, the first phase of which is expected to bring 1.3 gigawatts of clean energy to northern Indiana.
In Slovakia, Gov. Holcomb, Sec. Chambers, Adjutant General Lyles and the First Lady will meet with nongovernmental and civil society organizations to express Indiana’s support for Ukraine and Ukrainian refugees, in partnership with the Indiana National Guard.
The delegation will meet with Slovak leaders in Bratislava, the Slovak capital, to promote Indiana as a premier destination for global innovation in the economy of industries of the future, including sustainable energy and Industry 4.0.
On March 30-31, the delegation will meet with Israeli leaders in Tel Aviv, Israel, to discuss agricultural biosciences, electric vehicle (EV) mobility, innovation and start-up/start-up companies. scale, particularly in the area of the green economy. , followed by a meeting with potential companies to develop agro-tech accelerators and opportunities to foster future economic cooperation.
(Press release from the Office of Governor Eric J. Holcomb)