Gov. Bryant Touts Manufacturing in the StateBy Paul Boger | Published 23 Aug 2013 07:33am |
Governor Phil Bryant says Mississippi is one of the best states in the country at attracting new manufacturers.
"The state’s been very successful. Mississippi is now ranked number nine in the nation for economic development opportunity. Number two, we're the second in the nation for the cost of utilities for manufacturers." said Bryant
Bryant made that statement at the Walmart U.S. Manufacturing Summit in Orlando, Fla., yesterday. He says the reason for Mississippi's top ranked business climate is because of the state's hand's-off approach.
"So, what we do in Mississippi is something we think is very important. We get out of their way. We let them grow. We do not over-tax them, over-regulate them; we get out of their way, and let them be entrepreneurs." said Bryant.
While many applaud Mississippi's efforts so far, some say more can be done to attract manufacturers to the state. Bob Neal is a senior economist with the Institutions of Higher Learning. He says creating more skilled workers would help bring more businesses to Mississippi.
"We can't compete with India and Brazil and China for low wage, low skill jobs. Why not peruse nationally recognized standard certifications. Maybe that way you can demonstrate to the rest of the world that you have a work force here that is trained and certified." said Neal
However, Jay Moon, President of the Mississippi Manufacturers Association, says he believes it's Mississippians themselves making the state an attractive place for businesses.
"Our workforce has been stated over and over again --by companies located here and that have other plants around the world and around the United States -- as being one of the best workforces anywhere in the world today," said Moon.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, in July 2013, more than 135,700 Mississippians were employed in manufacturing jobs.
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