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Sandoval plans trade missions to Mexico, Israel

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LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval will lead trade missions to Mexico and Israel in 2013 to promote the state's export opportunities and encourage investment in the Silver State by companies abroad, the governor announced at a Las Vegas business luncheon.

The first-term Republican governor, who has taken a hands-on approach to expanding Nevada's economy and business stature, made the announcement Friday before the Las Vegas Regional Economic Development Council, the Las Vegas Review-Journal (http://bit.ly/XAgr6R) reported. The council was formerly called the Nevada Development Authority.

The mission to Mexico follows overtures by Latin American business leaders about investment opportunities in Mexico and other Latin American markets, Sandoval told the newspaper after his speech to 800 business leaders.

As for the Israel trade mission, Sandoval said water companies could potentially be targeted for business deals.

Sandoval postponed a trade mission to Israel in mid-May, saying he wanted to focus first on Nevada's own economic development.

He had been scheduled to speak at the 18th International Agricultural Exhibition in Tel Aviv. Topics were to include technologies to expand water supplies, cyber security, clean energy and technology commercialization.

In September, Sandoval led a 10-day trade mission to China and South Korea that his office said culminated with agreements for two Nevada companies to expand their reach to Asia.

Las Vegas-based Tate Snyder Kimsey Architects signed a joint venture contract to help design a business campus near Hong Kong, and Reno-based confectioner Kimmie Candy signed a distribution agreement to let it enter the Chinese candy market.

On the same trip, Desert Research Institute President Stephen Wells signed a memorandum of understanding with the Chinese Academy of Science's Institute of Earth Environment to collaborate on atmospheric research.

In his speech, Sandoval also touted the state's success in keeping online travel company Expedia.com from leaving Nevada. Sandoval said the state negotiated a deal to keep Expedia in a Las Vegas call center employing 500 workers.

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Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com

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