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GPI in the Press

GPI featured: How global cities are innovating to leverage foreign investment

September 11,2019 | By The Brookings Institution
Greater Portland Inc is part of the Global Cities Initiative, a project of the Brookings Institution and JPMorgan Chase aimed at helping the leaders of metropolitan America strengthen their regional economies by becoming more competitive in the global marketplace. The project seeks to catalyze a shift in economic policy and practice to position metro areas for high-quality growth and better jobs for more workers. The following is an excerpt from a Brookings report that highlights GPI's continuing work to attract foreign direct investment.

Over the past 10 years, Portland, Ore. has seen its foreign direct investment (FDI) pipeline grow from 5% of the total share of regional investment to 30%. A deliberate effort by Greater Portland Inc., the regional public-private economic development organization (EDO) of Portland, led this progress through the integration of FDI strategy into mainstream economic development. In Portland, foreign business recruitment connects to all other aspects of the regional strategy, from global marketing programs, to industry growth, to talent attraction.

This represents an increasing trend in which regional EDOs proactively seek FDI and make it an integral part of their mission. EDO leaders invest the time, expertise, and resources required to recruit foreign businesses because they acknowledge the innate advantages of attracting foreign-owned firms. Foreign investment contributes to—and in some case drives—economic, innovation, and exports growth by infusing knowledge, technology, and global supply chain connections into local communities. Foreign activity can also catalyze additional foreign investments by signaling the region’s attractiveness globally.

Eight years into the Global Cities Initiative, many EDOs have developed plans to mainstream FDI into broader economic development strategy. As we explain in this brief, EDOs have gained a more sophisticated approach to FDI. They are now better connecting their international outreach strategy in service of local priority sectors. They intentionally target foreign markets. And they acknowledge the importance of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and the fundamental connections between FDI and exports.

Read the full article here.

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