Gov. Brian Kemp (center) with officials from Hyundai Motor Group at the 2022 groundbreaking of the Korean automaker’s electric vehicle manufacturing plant in Bryan County.

ATLANTA – Gov. Brian Kemp and First Lady Marty Kemp are leading a trade mission to the Republic of Korea.

Georgia’s first couple is leaving Tuesday and returning next week at the head of a delegation that includes several state legislators and representatives of the state Department of Economic Development, Georgia Environmental Protection Division, and the Georgia Ports Authority.

Rather than drumming up new business, the trip will focus on strengthening existing relationships.

“The Republic of Korea was the very first country I visited when I became governor for a good reason – because of the incredible partners located there,” Kemp said. “Marty and I are glad to return so that we can reinforce those great friendships that are bringing historic investments and jobs to communities all across the state.”

The delegation will meet with executives from industries now operating in Georgia or building new facilities in the Peach State. The list includes Hyundai Motor Group, Kia, CJ Foodville, LG Group, SK Group and Hanwha Qcells.

As that roster indicates, many of the companies hosting the Georgia group are involved in the state’s rapidly growing electric vehicles industry.

“Connectivity leads to business, and relationships build the foundations of mutual progress,” said Pat Wilson, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development. “Meeting with the leadership of existing industries at their headquarters provides a unique opportunity to learn more about their perspective on an industry and where it is headed.

“Keeping the lines of communication open, we can stay ahead of the curve in industry shifts, positioning Georgia at the forefront of new opportunities.”