On June 15 2016, the Tampa Bay metro region announced that it has been selected to join a small group of city-regions that will create new strategies to attract and leverage foreign direct investment through the Global Cities Initiative, a joint project of the Brookings Institution and JPMorgan Chase. The effort builds on the Tampa Bay Export Alliance, the regional export plan created here in 2014 in order to take full advantage of international trade and investment as a major opportunity for economic development.
Chosen by Brookings through a competitive application process, Tampa Bay will join Baltimore, Fresno, Houston, Salt Lake County and St. Louis in developing a foreign direct investment plan. Tampa Bay was evaluated for its readiness, capacity, and commitment to maximize foreign direct investment sources such as greenfield expansions, mergers and acquisitions, private equity, joint ventures, and sovereign wealth funds.
“We are very excited to be a part of this Global Cities Initiative FDI cohort,” said J.P. DuBuque, Interim CEO and President of the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation. “If we expect to compete in today’s economy, we have to put ourselves at the center of international commerce. The strategies identified in this study will help us get there.”
Launched in 2012, the Global Cities Initiative helps metropolitan areas grow their economies by strengthening international connections and competitiveness, with a focus on traded industry sectors. GCI activities include producing data and research to guide decisions, fostering practice and policy innovation, and facilitating a peer-learning network for replication and dissemination.
“We chose to work with metro areas that proved they are committed to pursuing international economic opportunities and able to think creatively about foreign direct investment as part of a comprehensive economic development strategy,” said Marek Gootman, Brookings fellow and director of strategic partnerships and global initiatives. “We are confident that Tampa Bay is positioned to take greater advantage of foreign direct investment, and can be a national leader in finding more effective approaches to global economic engagement.”
Foreign direct investment makes an outsized contribution to regional economic development, not only as a new source of capital. Foreign-owned enterprises tend to pay higher wages, invest more in research and development and worker training, increase exports through access to global networks, drive productivity growth, and transfer innovations. As the world’s largest economy with a stable investment environment, the U.S. has been a top destination for foreign direct investment, yet its share of that investment has fallen. Metropolitan leaders, in partnership with their states, are best equipped to attract and retain foreign direct investment by promoting their areas’ unique specializations and establishing strategic, mutually beneficial relationships.
“JPMorgan Chase is proud to be a part of the development of Tampa Bay’s FDI plan and to support innovative planning that will contribute to our region’s future economic success,” said Michael L. Dosal, Managing Director North Florida, JPMorgan Chase. “International trade and investment represent a promising pathway for local businesses to grow and, in turn, create jobs and expand our local economy.”
Tampa Bay will be represented by a team of local leaders including Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation, Pinellas County Economic Development, Pasco Economic Development Council, Port Tampa Bay, Tampa International Airport and the University of South Florida with additional support from the Tampa Bay Partnership and various other public and private sector entities.
As a result of this project, Tampa Bay will produce a foreign direct investment market assessment; strategic plan with goals, tactics, and implementation commitments; and a policy memorandum. The work will complement the region’s existing regional export plan to form a complete international trade and investment strategy.
For more information on the Global Cities Initiative please visit www.brookings.edu/projects/global-cities.aspx orwww.jpmorganchase.com/globalcities.
The Global Cities Initiative is a joint-project of the Brookings Institution and JPMorgan Chase designed to help metropolitan leaders advance and grow their regional economies by strengthening international connections and competitiveness, focused on their traded sectors. GCI activities include producing data and research to guide decisions, fostering practice and policy innovations, and facilitating a peer-learning network through replication and dissemination. For more information, seehttp://www.brookings.edu/projects/global-cities.aspx or www.jpmorganchase.com/globalcities.