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SD governor leading another trade mission to China

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) -- Gov. Dennis Daugaard said Wednesday that he'll lead another trade mission to China in the spring, and he urged South Dakota business leaders to join him in exploring new opportunities the world's second-largest economy has to offer.

The trip is scheduled April 5-12, according to the Governor's Office of Economic Development. Daugaard led a similar trade mission last spring.

"One area of focus for my office has been increasing our state's exports, which in turn will help grow South Dakota's economy through job creation," Daugaard said in a statement Wednesday. "We are returning to China because the Chinese market offers South Dakota businesses tremendous potential for growth."

China is the world's most populous nation, with more than 1.3 billion people, and only the U.S. has a bigger economy.

South Dakota Economic Development Commissioner Pat Costello and state Agriculture Secretary Walt Bones also will be part of the trade mission. Representatives of up to 15 companies also will be selected to participate and be eligible for partial reimbursement of their costs.

The trade mission is being funded by a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration.