Governor Eric Holcomb has signed a memorandum of understanding with the minister of economy from Slovakia. The Indiana Economic Development Corp. says the partnership aims to build on the established relationships between Indiana and Slovakia "while advancing collaborative efforts toward two-way investment, trade and workforce development."
The signing of the agreement with Peter Žiga is part of the governor’s economic development trade mission to Europe. The IEDC says, as part of the MOU, the two parties will share best practices and identify opportunities to partner in industries such as advanced manufacturing, defense, automotive, energy, agriculture technology, information technology and cybersecurity.
"Indiana and Slovakia have long enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship, focused primarily on defense and education," Holcomb said in a news release. "This trip is an opportunity to explore additional opportunities for collaboration and the MOU we signed gives us our ‘to do list’ as we take the Indiana-Slovakia partnership to the next level.”
Indiana already has relationships with Slovakia related to the defense and academic sectors. The Indiana National Guard has been a partner unit to the Slovak Armed Forces since 1994. Holcomb and the Indiana delegation, including Secretary of Commerce Jim Schellinger and Adjutant General Courtney Carr, met with Slovak Minister of Defence Peter Gajdoš as part of the trip.
Per the terms of the MOU, Indiana also plans to boost its academic cooperation with Slovakia through enhanced exchange programs and other existing initiatives, according to the IEDC. Indiana University and Purdue University currently have connections to academic institutions in Slovakia.
The delegation is next heading to Switzerland and also has planned stops in Austria, Germany and France before heading back to Indiana.