Being in Japan this past week with Mayor Bonnie Crombie was different than our previous investment missions. This economic development mission was focused on business retention and expansion. Building relationships with these Japanese companies is important if Mississauga hopes to influence their future expansion plans. Strengthening our relationship with Japan will benefit Mississauga in the long run as we look to welcome more Japanese organizations.
Mississauga is home to approximately 100 Japanese based companies, more than any other city in Canada. Mississauga’s hard work in this market has paid off, as the number of Japanese companies has grown significantly since we started conducting missions here nearly three years ago.
These missions are also the beginning of many long-lasting relationships that we value and nurture with our existing Japanese companies. On Friday morning in the hotel lobby, the President and CEO of a NTN Bearings Canada walked up to me and said “Hello”. What a coincidence. Mayor Crombie and I met him at his Canadian Headquarters in Mississauga, two months earlier. Moments later, I crossed paths with three senior executives from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Aerospace Canada, again from Mississauga, and we exchanged updates.
I guess Mississauga is becoming well known in Japan. Earlier this week, during a reception in honour of Mayor Crombie, the Mayor of Osaka, Mr. Hirofumi Yoshimura met with us to discuss areas of common interest. He said that once he heard about Mississauga he wanted to come and meet Mayor Crombie and learn what other cities around the world are doing to attract and retain their businesses. Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura was very impressed that Mississauga was home to so many Japanese companies and that we had demonstrated laser like focus on attracting and retaining business investment from Japan. We will continue building relationships with our current Japanese organizations and hope to welcome many more.