(The Center Square) – The equine industry in Maryland is getting an international injection, Gov. Larry Hogan said.
The governor, as part of his trip to Western Europe, met with Vice President Francois Decoster of the Hauts-de-France region on Tuesday. The leaders signed a memorandum of understanding that is designed to create even stronger ties between the two regions when it comes to the horse industry.
Under the agreement, each region is now working in a partnership that will help create an exchange program for students and professionals to attend, learn, and compete at schools and competitions in each place.
“Maryland has more horses per square mile than any other state in America and a thriving horse industry that is vital to our state’s economy,” Hogan said in the release. “We have a long tradition of French horses, owners, trainers, and jockeys competing in Maryland, and we look forward to expanding this valuable partnership.”
According to the release, the memorandum was signed at the Prix de Diane Race in Chantilly, France. The event is a Group 1 flat horse race open to 3-year-old thoroughbred fillies. Maryland, meanwhile, hosts the Preakness Stakes and the Maryland 5 Star, which is one of only two held in the United States.
The horse industry, according to the release, brings more than $1.3 billion and more than 21,000 jobs to the state.
“The Région Hauts-de-France desires to implement our December 2020 framework agreement very quickly through this agreement on the equine sector,” Decoster said in a release. “We expect concrete results for our horse industries both in Hauts-de-France and Maryland.”
According to the release, the state is working with France to offer opportunities in life sciences, the equine industry, and educational exchanges between the two entities.
On Monday, according to the release, Hogan met with Secretary General Alexis Kohler at Elysee Palace in Paris. The two discussed the impact of the county’s elections held on Sunday, the war in Ukraine, the world economy, and global cybersecurity.