Holmes County looks to China for possible investments

Published: Thursday, November 14, 2013 at 11:54 AM.

BONIFAY — Raymon Thomas, recently hired as the Executive Director of the Holmes County Development Commission, requested that there be a meeting called with all local agencies and boards during the Holmes County Board of County Commissioners meeting on Nov. 12 to discuss the recent interest China has taken in area.

“I was recently invited to the China Summit that was held in Alabama,” said Thomas. “Three hundred and fifty Chinese manufacturers signed up for the summit and because of a delay, 562 manufacturers came to Southeast Alabama. They’ve got over $100 trillion in Chinese currency that they’re planning on investing in foreign countries with Japan being number one, Hong Kong being second and the United States in third.”

He said there’s a company already set up in North Carolina employing 1,500 people.

“Are we ready? I say we’re not,” he said. “What I propose is that we put together a steering committee with all the local agencies and boards including the Board of County Commissioners, the school board, real estate and medical. We need that committee and we need to be ready because they don’t buy land, it’s given to them.”

He requested that a meeting be called with all the local agencies and boards because representatives will be coming into the area in March.

“We might not get a factory employing 1,500 people in Holmes County but we need to be ready and Holmes County is not,” said Thomas. “I’m not into foreign investment but this is an investment we need. Lets get together and see if we can bring something to Holmes County.”

The commissioners agreed that all the local agencies should come together for a joint meeting on the matter.

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