At a grand-opening event in Columbia County for Amazon’s newest robotics facility in the Peach State, Governor Brian P. Kemp announced that Georgia has earned the “Top State for Doing Business” title for the eighth year in a row from Area Development.
“We’re proud to accept the title of Top State for Doing Business from Area Development for the eighth year in a row,” said Governor Kemp. “Thanks to our nation-leading workforce development efforts, resilient job creators, and strong pro-business environment, Georgia is emerging from the global pandemic with unprecedented economic momentum. My administration will remain focused on building on this solid foundation and continuing to bring more jobs and opportunity to hardworking Georgians across the state.”
The executive publication’s annual poll of approximately 50 leading site consulting firms from across the U.S. considers 13 different factors to make this determination. In addition to Top State, Georgia earned a No. 1 ranking in five categories, including overall cost of doing business, cooperative and responsive state government, competitive labor environment, workforce development programs, and available real estate.
“Georgia’s strong leadership from our elected officials continues to advance our state and its workforce forward,” said Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan. “From freight to fintech, agriculture to small businesses and innovation, Georgia remains an economic powerhouse. Even during a life-altering year, Georgia has seen unprecedented growth and development, all while keeping our unemployment rate as one of the lowest in the nation. I am thrilled that the efforts of our state are being recognized by Area Development for the eighth straight year.”
“From cutting taxes to investing in education and workforce development, we have worked year after year to keep Georgia the best state in the nation for business,” said Speaker David Ralston. “I appreciate Area Development’s recognition of our efforts. Being the No. 1 state for business means good quality jobs for Georgia citizens and helps us keep the state a great place to live, to work, and to raise a family. This is a team effort, and I am thankful to the professionals at the Georgia Department of Economic Development as well as our private-sector partners who represent Georgia’s business-friendly brand to companies around the globe.”
Area Development’s 2021 Top States for Doing Business results reflect the rankings that states receive based on scores in the following categories: Overall cost of doing business, cooperative and responsive state government, favorable regulatory environment, corporate tax environment, business incentives, competitive labor environment, workforce development programs, logistics and infrastructure, access to capital and project funding, available real estate, energy availability and costs, speed of permitting, and site-readiness programs. Georgia placed in the top 10 for all 13 categories.
“Area Development’s annual Top States for Doing Business Survey polls selected site location consultants who are responsible for their clients’ decisions that each year result in hundreds of new facility locations or expansions, billions of dollars in capex, and millions of square feet in new construction, but most importantly create thousands of new U.S. jobs,” said Publisher and President Dennis J. Shea.
“Over the last eight years, each award of the No. 1 state for business title from Area Development has been special. But this year, in the face of a global pandemic and all the challenges associated with COVID-19 worldwide, it is especially gratifying to continue to be recognized for our partnership with the business community to work together, regardless of global circumstances, to grow jobs and investment in every corner of the state,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Pat Wilson. “And it is very appropriate to announce this honor with Amazon, a company which has created thousands of new jobs across Georgia, while providing a platform for our small and medium-sized businesses to continue to grow. Amazon is a prime example of our partnership approach to economic development. Many thanks to Governor Kemp and the Georgia General Assembly for their continued leadership and tireless support.”
This recognition follows Governor Kemp’s announcement that the state set new economic development records during fiscal year 2021 in spite of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. During this period, investments in Georgia increased by 46%, while job creation increased 5% above prior state economic development records. Between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, new investments totaled $10.97 billion and 33,439 jobs were created.The Top State announcement was made at the grand opening of Amazon’s new robotics fulfillment center in Appling. Governor Kemp originally announced the 450,000-square-foot Amazon project in April 2020, and it is Amazon’s second robotics site in the state. Since 2010, Amazon has created more than 21,000 jobs in Georgia, and the company maintains facilities in Gwinnett County, East Point, Braselton, Jefferson, Kennesaw, Lithia Springs, Union City, and Macon, along with a site under construction in Savannah.