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Report Calls for Increased Exporting in Ohio

Today, the Brookings Institution released a report focusing on the importance of exports to both Ohio and the nation's largest metropolitan areas. The report, Export Nation: How U.S. Metros Lead National Export Growth and Boost Competitiveness, is the first comprehensive analysis of U.S. exports of goods and services produced in America’s 100 largest metropolitan areas. Seven of Ohio’s metros are included in the report: Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Toledo and Youngstown.

Export Nation’s findings are consistent with Greater Ohio Policy Center/Brookings’ Restoring Prosperity report, which called upon Ohio’s regions to build upon their strength in manufacturing and exporting goods, while also strategically adapting to new demands in the next economy.

Both reports call for policies that promote increasing educational attainment, workforce training based on industry demand, and greater investment in innovation. Greater Ohio’s Restoring Prosperity report emphasized the need for Ohio’s state policy efforts to promote exports and encourage growth in Ohio’s cities and metropolitan areas.

According to Export Nation service exports make up a lower percent of total exports in Ohio metros than the nation's other large metros, which likely correlates to below average, college attainment.  With regards to goods exports, all of Ohio's metros surpass the national average.  However, the recent Brookings report also found that Ohio's major metros are comparatively weak in innovation as shown by patent rates compared with their national peers, despite the high levels of manufacturing employment and generally high export intensity.  Nationally, metros that are manufacturing oriented or export intensive typically tend to have higher patent rates.

Greater Ohio believes reliable export data can inform state and local leaders about the untapped export potential of Ohio’s metropolitan areas, and assist them as they reorient the state and its metros to the global trade environment to remain competitive in the 21st century global economy.

For additional Ohio-specific export data click here or see the full report at http://www.brookings.edu/reports/2010/0726_exports_istrate_rothwell_katz.aspx