Tuesday, Gov. Nikki Haley spoke to reporters from England where she has been meeting with CEOs in the aerospace industry and selling them on South Carolina.
She says the Southeast U.S. is getting attention: “The Southeastern states have an advantage because we’ve kept the cost of business low. What we are seeing is we have gained a lot of strength. I had one governor say that ’we never worried about South Carolina and now South Carolina comes up every time we’re talking to a company.’ That’s a good sign.”
Gov. Haley said as of Tuesday state officials had done about 50 meetings with international companies, mainly to get acquainted.
“It’s the starting point. It’s the CEO of the state talking to the CEO of a company, ‘We want you to come visit and see what we have to offer,” Haley said. “We expect a lot of follow-up meetings.”
She was criticized last year for the money spent on attending the show. Haley said this year there are twice as many governors there as last year and more states trying to attract the aerospace sector.
Haley says she has been able to reach out to suppliers for both Boeing and Airbus, now that Airbus is building a plant in Alabama.
“There’s a lot of buzz about that and Boeing is raving about us so that’s done nothing but help,” Haley said.
Haley says her delegation has also been meeting with Boeing and GKN Aerospace, which is building an Orangeburg facility, while at the Farnborough Air Show.