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In Case You Missed It: Wall Street Journal Heralds Texas Economy

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Location: Austin, TX


In Case You Missed It: Wall Street Journal Heralds Texas Economy

The challenge for our national economy in a world of competition is to become more like Texas and less like Ohio.

The Wall Street Journal today touted Texas' notable economic strength and vigor in the wake of a national economic slow-down. In light of Tuesday's primaries, Texas was directly compared to Ohio.

The editorial contributes factors such as low taxes, "right to work" state status, and an affordable cost of living as important marks that give Texas a competitive edge for 21st century global competition. Texas significantly bested Ohio in new job creation, net domestic migration, unemployment rates, per capita income and exports.

"We live in a world that moves faster than at any time in history," Gov. Perry said. "Knowledge and capital are rapidly being deployed to parts of the world where the right combination of talent, technology, business climate, infrastructure and markets converge. I believe Texas is that place, now more than ever."

Texas led the nation in exports for the sixth consecutive year, totaling $168 billion and generating tens of thousands of jobs in 2007. The state's largest export market continued to be its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) trading partners, which accounted for approximately 43.4 percent of total state exports during 2007. This statistic refutes arguments against the trade opportunities made possible by NAFTA. The Wall Street Journal writes, "Anti-NAFTA rhetoric doesn't play well in El Paso, San Antonio and Houston, which have become gateway cities for commerce with Latin America and have flourished since the North American Free Trade Agreement passed Congress in 1993."

In fact, Texas is a top-ranked global destination for foreign direct investment. In 2006, Texas ranked third nationally for the number of "in sourcing" jobs, with 345,000 Texans employed by foreign-owned companies. Foreign and domestic investment in Texas has reached monumental levels, due in part, to the state's innovative economic development tools: the Texas Enterprise Fund and the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. These resources, combined with a reasonable regulatory environment, have lured the likes of Toyota, Samsung, General Motors and others to the Lone Star State.

Additionally, for the third year in a row, the nation's leading executives ranked Texas the best state in the nation to do business. The reason mirrors what many publications have applauded Texas for: controlled taxes and spending, reasonable regulations, an educated work force, quality of life and infrastructure. (Chief Executive Magazine, January 2008).

"Texas has been prospering while Ohio lags, and the reasons are instructive about what works and what doesn't in economic policy," the WSJ states.


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