Foreign affiliates were behind nearly one-third of the $4.4 billion companies decided to invest in Georgia during the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, according to the state’s economic development department.
More than 80 companies announced investments of $1.3 billion and the creation of 4,000-plus jobs, about one-sixth of the 25,341 new positions announced during the year overall.
The state’s Global Commerce division, which encompasses both international companies and domestic firms either expanding or making new investments in the state, worked with 365 companies over the course of the year — one per day.
The bulk of the investment came from companies that already had operations here; expansions accounted for about two-thirds of the monetary figure ($3 billion) and more than half of new jobs, according to a release from Gov. Nathan Deal’s office.
The release did not break down how many of the foreign investments were also expansions. Georgia is home to more than 2,500 foreign affiliates, by some estimates, and major expansions of foreign-owned firms like Japanese tractor manufacturer Kubota and Korean auto maker Kia have been key job creators.
The release did note that Korea was the top investor by number of projects: 13. At the same time, Germany was the country whose companies created the most jobs.
The announcement comes as the metro Atlanta area embarks on a coordinated plan to attract foreign investors through the Brookings Institution’s Global Cities Initiative. That plan focuses heavily on expansion of existing firms, as well as mergers and acquisitions — purchases of U.S. firms by foreign firms — a new frontier in economic development.
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