Gov. Walker, Meyer headed to China with Trump

Alaska Gasline Development Corporation President Keith Meyer, Alaska Gov. Bill Walker and Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Andy Mack discuss meetings with potential buyers of Alaska’s LNG during a press conference on Friday Sept. 30, 2016 in Anchorage. Meyer and Walker area headed to China with President Donald Trump, where they plan to tout the state’s gasline megaproject. (Photo by Rashah McChesney)

President Donald Trump is headed to China next week. Alaska’s Governor and the man tasked with landing a deal to build the state’s ambitious gas pipeline project will be there.

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Gov. Bill Walker and Keith Meyer will be in Beijing with the president, as part of a larger group of corporate leaders and members of the private sector.

Walker wouldn’t say if he planned to announce any deals with potential partners for Alaska’s $45 billion LNG project.

“You know, it’s too soon to say. I will actually be in China a couple of days before the president arrives into China, into Beijing. So we’ll see what happens in these final few days,” Walker said.

But Walker said his goal for the trip is to make a deal. He also had no details on meetings scheduled with potential customers. No one from the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation returned a phone call and email seeking more information on the trip.

Walker said he sees this trip as the most significant opportunity Alaska will have to engage with the market on the project.  He said it aligns with the Trump administration’s goals of working with China on trade and energy policy.

“It’s a good fit for a number of reasons,” Walker said. ”One is, it’s about a $10 billion dollar a year offset on the balance of trade issue and also what it does on the air quality, air emissions, natural gas vs. some of the other fuels that they use in those areas.”

Walker will fly with President Trump to Hawaii on Friday for a meeting with four other governors on Pacific issues. Then, he’ll head to Beijing on Saturday.