The mission will focus on nurturing and strengthening business relationships in Japan, Korea, and the Philippines, while expanding markets for British Columbia goods and services. Clark announced the mission at Fibreco Export Inc., the province’s largest facility for shipping wood pellets for bioenergy production. Fibreco has shipped wood pellets to Japan for 20 years and has recently begun shipping their product to Korea.
“The growth of B.C.’s green energy biomass wood pellet industry has been an enormous success and has created hundreds of new jobs in the province,” said Grant Watkins, president of Fibreco. “B.C. wood pellets, made from sawmill residuals and forest biomass, are replacing coal in electric power generating plants in Europe and Asia to meet alternative energy/carbon reduction goals in those markets and Korea and Japan represent tremendous opportunities for us to expand biomass shipments. “Fibreco is currently loading 100 per cent of B.C.’s biomass exports on behalf of the wood pellet producers who do their own sales and marketing,” continued Watkins.
“We’re thrilled that the B.C. government is pursuing more opportunities in these Asian markets and we are proud to be a part of it.”
Premier Clark will depart Vancouver on May 12 for Japan. While in Japan, the Premier will meet with government and business officials regarding the natural gas, technology, and mining sectors identified in “Canada Starts Here: The BC Jobs Plan”.
The Premier will leave Japan for Korea on May 16. There she will meet with government and business leaders in Seoul and Suwon, with discussions focused on the forestry, international education, technology and clean technology (including bioenergy), mining, and natural gas sectors.
Before returning to Vancouver on May 20, the Premier will fly to the Philippines on May 19. While there, she will meet with government officials in Manila to discuss ways of addressing labour mobility barriers for skilled workers. A detailed list of highlights of the 2012 BC Jobs and Trade Mission follows..C. businesses are first in line to take advantage of the growing market opportunities in Asia,” said Premier Clark.
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