WEDC: German State of Hessen dignitaries tour Wisconsin research, industry and education facilities

Contact: Lauren Foley, 608.210.6834, [email protected]

60-member delegation seeks to build upon sister-state relationship through collaboration

MADISON, WI. May 4, 2016 – A cadre of top diplomatic and business officials representing the German state of Hessen, including Minister President Volker Bouffier, visited Wisconsin as part of the 40th anniversary of a transatlantic sister-state relationship. Officials toured the Midwest Energy Research Consortium (M-WERC), the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and the University of Wisconsin Madison to learn more about the state’s manufacturing and educational assets.

“The great bond between Wisconsin and Hessen is strengthened by Minister President Bouffier’s visit,” said Mark Hogan, secretary and CEO of Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). “We are reaffirming today our powerful sister-state relationship with Hessen with a new Memorandum of Understanding.”

Located in central Germany, Hessen is home to roughly 6 million people. Hessen’s largest city is Frankfurt and has one of the largest and healthiest economies in Europe. Over 210,000 United States citizens live and work in Hessen.

The sister-state relationship between Wisconsin and Hessen is the oldest partnership between a U.S. state and a German federal state, and covers a broad range of topics of mutual interest, from promoting and supporting business, to governmental, educational, cultural, tourism, scientific and technology cooperation.

The successful trip concluded with a renewal of the sister-state agreement between Wisconsin and Hessen, signed by Governor Walker and Minister President Bouffier.

The Hessen delegation’s visit was preceded by Wisconsin’s participation in a global trade venture to Hessen. Germany is consistently among Wisconsin’s top export destinations, and placed sixth in 2015.