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State Economic Development Officials Meet with European Companies

December 1, 2008

MONTGOMERY- State Finance Director Jim Main and Director of the Alabama Development Office Neal Wade are in Europe this week to meet with several companies that have major operations in the state of Alabama and to hold meetings with possible supplier plants for Volkswagen.


“Given the global economic climate, we wanted to talk with our European business partners to assure them we are committed to maintaining and expanding the relationships we have with them,” said State Finance Director Jim Main.


“These companies have been instrumental in creating the job growth we have seen in Alabama in recent years,” said Neal Wade, Director of the Alabama Development Office. “We want them to know we understand the difficulties in this challenging market, and that we are dedicated to working through these tough times in a spirit of cooperation.”


Main and Wade will travel to Germany, where they will meet with senior management of German steelmaker ThyssenKrupp, Evonik Degussa and several other companies. They will also talk with representatives to discuss the possibility of Volkswagen suppliers locating in Alabama. The German automaker announced in July that it will build its first American manufacturing plant in Chattanooga. The plant’s close proximity to Alabama makes the state well-positioned to earn the business of suppliers. Main and Wade will also conduct a planning session in France in preparation for Alabama's major presence at the 2009 Paris Air Show. Aerospace/aviation is one of Alabama's target industries with more than 130,000 Alabamians currently employed in that sector.

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