Why would foreign investors want to put their money into California? A recent report came out giving some interesting numbers for foreign investment in California, and it seems that California is the place to be.
For instance, one statistic that came out said that foreign investors in California employed more than 572,000 people in 2006. Most of those investors came from Europe, although Japan is also a big player. Around 23% of those jobs were in manufacturing.
California is a state in a lot of financial difficulties overall. Exports to other countries is one of their biggest industries, as estimates say around 95% of small and medium businesses are supported by exports. In 2008, California was second only to Texas in exports based on dollars, with around $144 billion. Most of their exports go to Mexico, with Canada, Japan and China close behind.
This makes California unique because of its foreign reach. It then makes sense that many foreign investors would want to put their stakes down in California and try to find ways to integrate themselves into the business sector, since it would give them a hand in playing ball in world financial markets. Being able to potential control both sides of the investment fence, both the exports from the United States, as well as imports to other countries, makes for a very lucrative investment.
California is a state that's friendly to outside investment. Part of their 2009 budget initiatives were to try to create a business friendly environment, making it easier to get permits for businesses that help create jobs throughout the state. Even with many of their environmental initiatives, they've worked hard to create tax incentives for all businesses to take advantage of. And, with California being one of the most diverse states in the nation, it's the leading state for attracting foreign investors. It's a state that has 18 foreign trade zones, areas where items can be stored without being taxed, and, if sold to other countries, won't incur any taxes at all.
What else attracts foreign investors? California is a state that people want to live in. It has some of the best infrastructure in the country. The weather is great in most of the state, and in this more northern areas, it's an easy trip to find better weather. It has the longest ocean coastline of any state in the nation, with lots of beachfront property. Some of those properties are exclusive, prime real estate with many amenities. And it's the home to more celebrities than any other state, which means that, even with a tough economy, there's plenty of potential business partners.