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News / Clark County News

Study focuses on bolstering regional economy

It offers strategies to strengthen high-tech opportunities, exports

By Aaron Corvin, Columbian Port & Economy Reporter
Published: May 4, 2015, 5:00pm

A new study of the Portland-Vancouver region’s economy spells out strategies for strengthening high-tech manufacturers, increasing supply chain opportunities and boosting exports. The study, announced by two regional economic development agencies Tuesday, calls for everything from more early-stage investment capital and state-funded development initiatives to an emphasis on workforce training.

The study, “Making Prosperity: Creating a Sound Economy Through Advanced Manufacturing with Advanced Materials, Robust Supply Chains and Exports,” was commissioned by the Vancouver-based Columbia River Economic Development Council and Greater Portland Inc.

It’s part of a larger group of analyses that stems from a three-year, $2.19 million federally funded research grant issued under the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge.

“This report helps lay the foundation for strategies and partnerships needed to enhance our global position in what is a rapidly growing and changing industry,” Mike Bomar, president of the Columbia River Economic Development Council, said in a news release.

The study notes that while states such as Ohio, Texas and New York are “making sustainable investments in their metro (areas,) Portland regional efforts are reportedly less supported at state levels.” The study provides manufacturing employment data and cites successful examples of public-private initiatives to make early-stage funding available to companies.

According to the study, the cities with the most manufacturing jobs in the greater Portland-Vancouver area are:

• Portland, 55,664

• Hillsboro, 25,389

• Beaverton, 15,928

• Vancouver, 6,377

• Camas, 2,297

For more information about the study and other related research, go to http://www.credc.org/regionalcollaboration.

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Columbian Port & Economy Reporter