Obama to open Hannover Messe in April

President will join German Chancellor Angela Merkel to participate in opening ceremonies, show tour on April 24-25.


President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel greet guests at a 2011 state visit in Washington. The President announced Dec. 30 he would meet with Merkel at Hannover Messe 2016 in Germany as part of the U.S. Partner Country status. Courtesy The WhitPresident Barack Obama will lead the United States delegation to Hannover Messe 2016 on April 24 to highlight the U.S. role as Partner Country at the global manufacturing trade show. Hannover Messe 2016 is April 24-29 in Hannover, Germany.

The White House confirmed President Obama’s participation in Hannover Messe in an announcement Dec. 30. “The President’s participation—a first for a sitting U.S. President—presents an unique opportunity to showcase American innovation and ingenuity and to highlight the United States as a prime investment destination,” the White House press office said in a release. “While in Germany, the President will address efforts to advance negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.”

Hannover Messe officials were delighted by the announcement. “President Obama’s participation sends a special signal about Hannover Messe’s international appeal,” said Dr. Jochen Köckler, member of the managing board at Deutsche Messe AG. “And the timing is perfect: in the midst of its reindustrialization the United States has become a very attractive business partner for industry. For German machinery and plant manufacturers, the USA is once again the number one market.”

Hannover Messe officials said that to date, more than 250 U.S. manufacturers have signed up to exhibit. The U.S. Department of Commerce also is working with American manufacturers looking to make contacts with prospective partners in Germany and Europe.

The President will join German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the opening ceremonies at Hannover Messe on Sunday, April 24 at the Hannover Centrum. The event traditionally features a cultural presentation by the Partner Country. On Monday, April 25, Obama and Merkel are expected to tour the fairgrounds and visit a number of trade show booths.

“This visit, which will be the President’s fifth to Germany, underscores the enduring political and economic ties between Americans and Germans and highlights the U.S. commitment to trade and investment as drivers of job creation and economic growth on both sides of the Atlantic,” the White House said in a statement. 

The President will continue the tradition of heads of state attending the opening ceremonies when their nations were selected as Partner Country. In 2012, Chinese premier Wen Jiabao opened the event and in 2013, Russian president Vladimir Putin addressed the opening ceremonies. Indian prime minister Narendra Modi appeared at the 2015 opening ceremonies.

- Bob Vavra is content manager, Plant Engineering, CFE Media, bvavra@cfemedia.com.

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