Alabama’s foreign direct investment increases by 11.8% from 2015 to 2020

More than half of the FDI workforce in the state is in manufacturing

A Mercedes EQS SUV makes its way along the production line at Mercedes-Benz U.S. International in Vance. The plant was the company’s first in America. Since 2017, Mercedes-Benz has been expanding so it can make electric vehicles, not only at the Vance production plant but also building a battery assembly plant in Bibb County.

The state of Alabama has 116,900 workers employed by international companies, with 57% of those jobs, or 66,400 jobs, being in manufacturing, according to the latest data gathered by Global Business Alliance.

There are 695 international companies in the Yellowhammer State. Japan, Germany and Canada support the largest number of jobs in Alabama among the international companies calling the state home.

“When international companies invest in America, they cast a vote of confidence in our workforce and economy,” said Nancy McLernon, president and CEO of Global Business Alliance. “Global investment strengthens America’s economy and makes it more resilient by fueling innovation, bolstering America’s manufacturing sector, exporting American-made goods and creating high-quality, good-paying jobs.”

Alabama has increased its foreign direct investment by 11.8% from 2015 to 2020. In comparison, the state’s overall private-sector employment increased just 1% during that same time. In comparison to its direct neighbors, Alabama would come in fourth for foreign direct investment jobs, with Tennessee having the largest percentage gain at 24.6%, followed by Mississippi at 23.5% and Georgia at 21%. Florida had an increase of 6.8%.

Nationwide, the foreign direct investment employment rate increased by 15%, while the country’s overall private-sector employment remained flat. From 2015-2020, international companies created nearly 400,000 new manufacturing jobs while the U.S. overall lost 223,000 over that same period.

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