Overseas investment, trade and tourists are playing a key role in Georgia‘s economic recovery, according to figures released by the Georgia Department of Economic Development Thursday.

The state attracted $3.75 billion in investment in the 2010 fiscal year ended June 30, a 46.7 percent increase over fiscal 2009, and created 19,462 jobs, up 14.7 percent, according to the department, the state’s sales and marketing arm.

The numbers show the beginnings of a recovery, but the state must “continue to scour the globe” to attract even more jobs and investment, Gov. Sonny Perdue said in a news release.

Two-thirds of the new investment came from company expansions. Including expansions, international companies invested $698 million, 21 percent of the total value, and created 4,424 jobs, twice as many as the previous year. The value of investments from global companies was down from $717 million in fiscal 2009, though the number of projects increased from 46 to 69 in fiscal 2010. 

The department’s international trade division provided services for 832 companies, 12 percent more than in fiscal 2009. Eighty-two percent of those companies have less than 100 employees. Often with help from its 10 international offices, the division assisted firms with 7 percent more trade deals, a total of 235 transactions in 50 countries valued at $21.3 million.

In 2009, the state attracted 689,000 international visitors, up 9 percent in contrast to a national decline of 6 percent. The state ranked second in the U.S. in international visitor growth, trailing only Virginia, according to U.S. Commerce Department data. Tourism sustained 212,200 jobs and generated $1.36 billion in state and local tax revenue.

Visit www.georgia-global.org for more information. 

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...