Texas and Japan Leaders to Discuss Regional Collaboration and Economic Partnerships in Houston

Houston, TX – From May 7 to 9, leaders from throughout the United States and Japan will convene in Houston for the Japan-Texas Economic Summit (JTES). Business leaders, investors, state and local officials, and economic development organizations will explore opportunities for collaboration, expand their network and discuss how to further strengthen Japan-Texas relations.

Following the highly successful Japan-Hawaii Economic Summit in 2017, the U.S.-Japan Council is honored to host its second regional summit in Texas. The Lone Star State is a leading destination for foreign direct investment from Japan, and boasts significant resources in fields like energy and medicine, as well as unique cities with distinct characteristics—many of them poised for collaboration with Japan.

The Summit will feature keynote addresses from prominent leaders from both countries, showcase Texas cities and their economic development opportunities, and focus on topics of importance to the Japan-Texas relationship, such as industry innovation, workforce development, energy, medicine, manufacturing, transportation, finance and national security. The Summit’s featured speakers include:

  • Mitsuru Claire Chino, President & CEO, ITOCHU International Inc.
  • Henry Cisneros, Founder & Chairman, CityView; Former HUD Secretary; Former Mayor of San Antonio, TX
  • Bruce Culpepper, President, Shell Oil Company
  • Takeshi Ebisu, President and CEO, Goodman Global Group, Inc.
  • Erik Halvorsen, Director, Texas Medical Center (TMC) Innovation Institute
  • Shigeru Hayakawa, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Toyota Motor Corporation; Vice Chair, Keidanren
  • Shigeki Maeda, Executive Vice President, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)
  • Hideaki Ohmura, Governor, Aichi Prefecture, Japan
  • Rolando Pablos, Secretary of State, Texas
  • Tom Schieffer, President and CEO, Envoy International LLC; Former U.S. Ambassador to Japan
  • Shinsuke J. Sugiyama, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the United States of America
  • Rona Tison, EVP – Corporate Relations & PR, ITO EN (North America) INC.
  • Sylvester Turner, Mayor of Houston, TX

(For the full list of speakers, click here.)

Participating regions and cities include:

  • City of Austin
  • City of Dallas
  • City of El Paso
  • Golden Triangle (Beaumont, Orange, Port Arthur) and Rockport Area
  • City of Houston
  • City of McAllen
  • City of Plano
  • City of San Antonio
  • Southeast Texas Economic Development Foundation – REDI
  • Texas Forest Country Partnership (East Texas)

The many dimensions of the Japan-Texas relationship will be reflected in the Summit’s plenary and breakout sessions. These include:

  • Open for Business: Opportunities for Japanese Companies in Texas
  • Security & Defense: National Security in the United States and Japan
  • Energy & Environment Outlook: Japan and Texas
  • Healthcare & Medical: Medical Innovation Hubs Solving U.S.-Japan Health Issues
  • Education & Workforce Development: Texas-Japan Partnerships Preparing the Workforce of the Future
  • Industry Innovation & Collaborations: The Texas-Japan Connection
  • Japan-Texas Culinary Exchanges
  • Looking Abroad: Business Expansion Opportunities in Japan

To see the agenda (this includes programs not open for media coverage; for more information please see the media registration link below), please click here.

Media Information

Date and Time:
Monday, May 7 (6:00-8:00pm); Tuesday, May 8 (9:00am-6:00pm); Wednesday, May 9 (9:00am-Noon)
Marriott Marquis Houston (1777 Walker Street, Houston, TX 77010)
Press registration is complimentary. Click here to register.

About the U.S.-Japan Council (USJC)

The U.S.-Japan Council is a Japanese American-led organization fully dedicated to strengthening ties between the United States and Japan in a global context. By promoting people-to-people relationships through its innovative programs in networking and leadership, the Council serves as a catalyst to inspire and engage Japanese and Americans of all generations. The Council was founded in 2008 and is headquartered in Washington, DC with staff in California, Hawaii and Tokyo. In 2012, the U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) was created to support the administration of the TOMODACHI Initiative, and in 2013, it became a Public Interest Corporation (koeki zaidan hojin). The U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) maintains an office in Tokyo, Japan. http://www.usjapancouncil.org/

Media Inquiries:

English (Media Relations Contact for JTES):
Misty Starks
[email protected]

Phyllis Bailey
[email protected]

Shiori Okazaki
Director of Communications
[email protected]