Overview: How it all connects

IMPACT on the Portland-metro
and Oregon economy | (8.1MB pdf)

Support documents:
First study:
An update of international trade trends | (1.6MB pdf)

Second study:
An assessment of the Portland Harborís economic impact | (1.1MB pdf)

Third study:
An economic analysis of trade-based businesses | (348KB pdf)

This report is part of a series produced for the Value of Jobs Coalition to track and understand the opportunities and challenges in the Portland-metro regionís economy. Included in this report are three inter-related studies about international trade, the Portland Harborís economic impact and marine industrial businesses engaged in trade activity.

This report also follows up on a 2010 Value of Jobs Coalition international trade study, which revealed several key findings about the regionís dependence on international trade and its role in the region and the stateís recovery from the most recent recession. That 2010 study led to a partnership between the city of Portland, Greater Portland, Inc. and the Brookings Institution on a specific plan to grow the regionís international exports, one of the first metropolitan export strategies in the nation.

Because the first international trade study led to such positive developments, we decided to take another look at the macro level to gauge changes since 2010. In addition, a number of our other reports on different aspects of the regionís economy led us to better understand the connection between international trade and the traded and local sectors at a more micro level.

Therefore, we conducted a second and third study about the connection between international trade and businesses engaged in trade activities, examining the economic impact of the Portland Harbor and that of five marine industrial businesses. The study about the Portland Harbor, including the Port of Portland, sheds some light on the harborís economic impact Ė from income earned by the businesses that operate there and employees who work there.

And lastly, the third study drills down even further into five marine industrial businesses, demonstrating how traded-sector businesses catalyze the regionís economy, creating more local-sector jobs through their procurement of goods and services.1

The findings of each study show that with access to one of the best multimodal transportation hubs on the West Coast, Portland-metro and Oregon businesses continue to rely on, and reap huge benefits from, efficient connections to domestic and international markets. That translates directly into thousands of family-wage jobs, which in turn support employment at supermarkets, car repair shops and many other businesses serving trade companies and workers.

The Portland-metro regionís geographic location on the Pacific Rim, deep-water and inland port system, international air connections and extensive road and rail infrastructure will continue to play a strong role in the economic recovery and growth of Oregon businesses and jobs.

However, we cannot afford to become complacent. Local, regional and national policy makers and business leaders must continue to work hard to ensure we remain competitive by encouraging investments in infrastructure and promoting tax and trade policies, as well as ensuring an adequate employment land supply, to facilitate international trade, and in turn, generate good family-wage jobs and a better quality of life.

1 The first study, Today More than Ever: Oregon and Portland/Vancouver Depend on International Trade and Investment, was completed in September 2013 by the Trade Partnership. The second, The Port of Portlandís Marine Operations, The Local Economic Benefits of Worldwide Trade, was completed in August 2013 by ECONorthwest. The third, Economic Linkages from Marine Industrial Businesses was completed in August 2013 by One Northwest Consulting.