Kempthorne and other members of the Idaho delegation met with the president of Taiwan, the vice president of Japan, and numerous business, government, tourism and trade officials. State Agriculture Director Pat Takasugi said the trip gave him hope that Japanese markets will soon reopen to Idaho beef, which is going over well now in Taiwan. Asian markets are now seven of Idaho’s top 10 trading partners, according to state Commerce and Labor chief Roger Madsen. “We can’t afford to ignore the importance of these markets to Idaho companies,” he said.
Part of the cost of the trade mission was picked up by corporate sponsor Zions Bank and the businesses that participated; the state spent about $120,000.