European Uncertainty

As the Greek crisis approaches conclusion, the overall economic health of the EU comes into question.

While there has been recovery (the Eurozone is growing at an annual rate of 1.3 percent), it has been sporadic.

In the second quarter of the year France and Italy, which account for 40 percent of the Eurozone economy, slumped. Italy, which had only recently emerged from recession, fell back, managing growth of just 0.2 percent.

Unemployment numbers are also troubling:

Unemployment (June 2015)

  • EU 9.6 percent
  • Eurozone 11.1  percent
  • Greece 25.6 percent (April)
  • Spain 22.5 percent
  • Italy 12.7 percent
  • France 10.2 percent
  • Germany 4.7 percent

Source: Eurostat

Other challenges remain.  Germany is doing well but its exports will be impacted by a slowdown in Asia, many new jobs are temporary, unemployment figures remain high, and future energy prices are uncertain.

EuroAreaGDP

What Does This Mean for Florida?

Europe has traditionally been an important source of foreign direct investment to the state.  An uncertain economic future for Europe could lead to more European companies considering expansion or relocation to stronger and more stable economic environments such as Florida.  Further slowdown in Asian economies could also lead to an interest in diversification and the pursuit of other markets which Florida could serve as a point of entry to.

 

LEARN MORE:

Positioning Florida as a strategic and important destination for foreign direct investment (FDI) is a key strategy. This is a strategy identified in the Florida Chamber Foundation’s most recent Trade and Logistics study. To learn more about how the Florida Chamber is work to build Florida’s international relationships, contact Alice Ancona today at aancona@flchamber.com.

Poland: A Nation of Steady Growth

Poland was the only EU nation to avoid recession during the financial crisis and despite a slowdown in 2012-2013 it continues to thrive with the IMF forecasting GDP growth of 3.5 percent for 2015, versus 1.5 percent for the Euro area.

Poland’s relative economic strength is most apparent by its container flows. While containerized trade from Asia to Europe has recently slowed – down 3 percent in the first four months of this year. Poland is registering slight increases. It’s container imports from Asia have significantly outpaced the rest of North Europe in recent years with 12 percent growth (between 2009-2014) which more than twice the rate of the rest of the region.

Poland’s containerized trade is still one-fifth the size as Germany’s, North Europe’s biggest market for Asian goods, but its rapid growth from approximately 3.2 percent in 2009 to 4.4 percent for the year-to-date in 2015 is certainly worth noting.

Poland’s economy is well positioned to outpace the rest of the EU.  Its economy has made significant gains and while its unemployment rate has declined, it still remains at around 8 percent it still has room for growth and a need to invest in its soft and hard infrastructure to take the next evolutionary step.

European Nations Lead Investments in Florida’s Global Economy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Edie Ousley, 850-521-1231 or 850-251-6261
eousley@flchamber.com

Companies from Europe Account for 67% of all Florida
Foreign Employment and 17% of Florida Origin Exports

TALLAHASSEE, FL. (May 27, 2015) – European countries are the leaders among foreign investors, with majority foreign-owned companies from Europe accounting for 67 percent of all Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) employment in Florida, the Florida Chamber of Commerce announced today.

“Florida’s leading European investors include the UK, Germany, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands. Europe presents unique strategic, trade and export opportunities for Florida,” said Alice Ancona, Director of Global Outreach for the Florida Chamber of Commerce.  “Currently, 17 percent of all Florida origin exports go to Europe, a market of over 500 million consumers. The U.S. and Europe represent half of the world’s economic production. Opening markets and creating jobs for Florida families are why trade is important to Florida.”

Florida visitors from Europe also help strengthen Florida’s economy and create jobs. In fact, every 85 visitors that come to Florida help create one new Florida job. Out of the top international countries for visitation to Florida, the UK ranked third, behind Canada and Brazil, with 1.6 million visitors in 2014.

The impact of international trade to Florida’s economy cannot be denied.

  • International business and foreign direct investment accounts for approximately 17 percent of Florida’s economic activity, and
  • Directly supports more than 1 million Florida jobs.
  • Florida is the seventh largest exporter of state-origin products with Florida-origin exports totaling more than $58.6 billion and exports from Florida supporting 275,221 U.S. jobs in 2013.

But Florida’s business leaders know that Florida must continue to work hard to remain the leader in international initiatives.

“Florida has come a long way in building international economic development efforts, but our work is far from over,” said Doug Davidson, Market Executive of Global Commercial Banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “At Bank of America, we support the Florida Chamber Foundation’s research in trade and logistics because we know that Florida’s future lies in being globally competitive.”

The Florida Chamber’s Global Florida Program’s mission is to educate and promote business opportunities, collaborate and advance policy initiatives in each of the four major geographic regions:  Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe and Middle East/Africa. Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam recently sponsored the Florida World Trade Month resolution, which was signed by Governor Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi and CFO Jeff Atwater.

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The Florida Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business and the state’s largest federation of employers, chambers of commerce and associations, aggressively representing small and large businesses from every industry and every region. The Florida Chamber works within all branches of government to affect those changes set forth in the annual Florida Business Agenda, and which are seen as critical to secure Florida’s future. The Florida Chamber works closely with its Political Operations and the Florida Chamber Foundation. Visit www.FloridaChamber.com for more information.

Did You Know Florida is the 7th Largest Exporter of State-Origin Products?

The impact Florida’s international relationships have on our economy cannot be denied. As the seventh largest exporter of state-origin products, Florida-origin exports total more than $58.6 billion and exports from Florida supported 275,221 U.S. jobs in 2013.

“Florida has come a long way in building international economic development efforts, but our work is far from over,” said Doug Davidson, Market Executive of Global Commercial Banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “At Bank of America, we support the Florida Chamber Foundation’s research in trade and logistics because we know that Florida’s future lies in being globally competitive.”

International business and foreign direct investment account for approximately 17 percent of Florida’s economic activity, and directly support more than 1 million Florida jobs. But as our economy grows, Florida must also continue to diversify export destinations- one of the strategies recommended in the Florida Chamber Foundation’s Florida Trade and Logistics Study 2.0.

From the Americas and beyond, Florida is quickly becoming the hub for global trade, especially in emerging markets such as Africa, Latin America and the Middle East- where growth projections remain higher than in developed markets and where purchasing power continues to increase.

The U.S. currently has five free trade agreements in the Middle East region. U.S. free trade agreements have helped expand Florida’s export opportunities. In fact, more than one-third of Florida exports go to countries that have trade agreements with the United States.

When oil exports are excluded, Florida is the number one exporter to Central and South America, with Florida exporting more than $30 billion in goods to that region in 2014.

While Florida’s top trade partners are Brazil and Canada, many emerging countries from several regions make Florida’s top 10 importers list, such as Peru (the site of a recent Enterprise Florida economic development mission trip that was attended by Alice Ancona, Director of Global Outreach for the Florida Chamber of Commerce), United Arab Emirates and Germany.

DYK_Chart_Exporters

As global trade and economic activity expand over the coming decades, international commerce will continue to play a role as an essential driver of Florida’s future. Diversifying Florida’s export destinations is a strategic step in accomplishing this and is outlined in the Florida Chamber Foundation’s Florida Trade and Logistics Study 2.0.

Florida can create a stronger global economy and jobs for future generations through increased investment in ports and infrastructure projects and expanded export manufacturing and value-added services.

The Florida Chamber is committed to connecting Florida’s business community to global opportunities and leveraging resources and investments to maintain and expand Florida’s position as an international trade leader. The International Business Council is launching a new program to support Florida businesses as they explore opportunities to diversify into new export markets. GLOBAL FLORIDA will focus on connecting them to resources, policy initiatives and business intelligence on market trends for four of the major geographic regions of the world: Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe and Middle East/Africa.

Together we can help Florida become the number one hub for global trade. Join the state’s international business community at the Florida Chamber’s International Days – a two-day event where the top international trade and industry experts will convene to discuss topics such as export diversification.

 

Share Your Story:

Can’t make International Days? Tell us your story and why international relationships matter to Florida by contacting Alice Ancona at aancona@flchamber.com.

About the Florida Scorecard:

The Florida Scorecard, located at www.TheFloridaScorecard.com, presents metrics across Florida’s economy. Each month, the Florida Chamber Foundation produces a Scorecard Stat that takes an in-depth look at one aspect of Florida’s economy. If you would like additional information on the Weekly Scorecard Stat or on the Florida Scorecard, please contact Dr. Jerry Parrish with the Florida Chamber Foundation at 850.521.1283.