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Ag and Economic Development Summit takes place in Kearney

Ag and Economic Development Summit
Ag and Economic Development Summit(Alicia Naspretto, KSNB)
Published: Aug. 4, 2021 at 7:31 PM CDT
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KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - Hundreds of people from across the state gathered in Kearney on Wednesday for the first-ever joint Ag and Economic Development Summit.

The event hosted several breakout sessions where people could learn about a wide variety of topics, including building broadband infrastructure, growing opportunities for Nebraska’s exports and fostering tech start ups.

Governor Pete Ricketts and former US Ambassador to China Terry Branstad were also there and gave a presentation during the lunch hour.

“I’m delighted to be here,” Branstad said. “It was a great opportunity to talk about the challenges and opportunities we have in dealing with our biggest rival in the world, which is the peoples republic of china.”

Ambassador Branstad said he hoped to work with the Biden Administrations new trade representative about how we can protect ourselves and our intellectual property as well.

“We even had a situation several years ago where we caught a Chinese researcher stealing corn technology from a pioneer in Iowa,” he said. “That is an ongoing concern. We’ve made some progress but we need to be continually vigilant.”

Governor Ricketts said he hopes the Biden Administration will continue to hold the country accountable.

“I hope the Biden Administration will continue the same policy of competition and accountability rather than engagement that we had done previously to the Trump Administration and continue to hold china accountable, not only in trade issues and intellectual property, but also on human rights,” Ricketts said.

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