New research from the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute concludes that on the whole, the Utah economy is larger and more prosperous because of globalization.
Data on Utah¹s foreign born, refugee resettlement, international travel, and international students also reinforce the positive economic impacts of globalization on the state economy.
³While some may portray free trade and open borders as threatening, the data suggest such a negative view is not warranted for Utah,² said Jim Wood, Ivory-Boyer senior fellow at the Gardner Institute and author of the study. ³Overall, the state economy has seen positive effects from globalization.²
Highlights from the report include the following:
- Utah¹s 2015 international goods exports (non-gold) supported $3.5 billion in earnings and 84,367 jobs and added $6.7 billion to Utah¹s gross domestic product.
- Utah has been largely shielded from the economic shocks of free trade due to the state¹s low concentration of import-vulnerable manufacturing jobs.
- Immigration is a vital source of labor supply for Utah employers. The state has nearly 172,200 foreign-born workers making up 12.5 percent of the Utah¹s workforce.
- Approximately 7 percent of the 116,600 students enrolled in the Utah System of Higher Education are international students.
³This report reaffirms the need for global engagement to generate sustained economic growth, and reveals many assets to build on,² said Marek Gootman, fellow and director of strategic partnerships and global initiatives at the Brookings Institution. ³The report reinforces the value of new efforts by business, government, and civic leaders to strengthen the international economic connections and competitiveness of Utah and its regions.²
The report is the inaugural edition of the Gardner Business Review, which shares applied economic analysis by the David Eccles School of Business. The report was shared with attendees of ³Metro Solutions: A Framework for regional growth, prosperity, and inclusion², an event convened by Salt Lake County, with participation by the Brookings Institution.