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Report: Exports, foreign investment boost Michigan economy


According to a report from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Michigan's exports in 2013 totaled $58.7 billion. More than 90 percent stemmed from Detroit, Warren and Dearborn. And about twenty percent of the Michigan exports were generated by small and medium size businesses with less than 500 employees.
Michael Finney heads the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. He said exports improve the state's employment picture, diversify the economy, and provide a hedge against domestic economic downturns.

 "If $200,000 of new business is created through export, a company creates one job. So if you just do the math, you can see the impact that exports have on companies here in Michigan in terms of job creation," Finney said.
The U.S. Commerce Department reported that in 2013 Michigan's export of goods supported about 289,000 jobs. 
The report also addressed foreign investment, stating that in 2011 foreign investment in the state was responsible for about five percent of the state's private industry employment. And foreign companies employed more than 177,000 Michigan workers that year.

 Finney said, "We think that because of Michigan's strong manufacturing capability, it makes sense for them to be located here and take advantage of the outstanding workforce that we have - be that engineering or manufacturing support and technician."
A spokesman for the MDEC pointed to an upward trend, citing a 4.7% increase in foreign capital investment in Michigan between 2011 and 2012 and a slight uptick in Michigan's share of total U.S. exports over the last few years.