Louisiana Ranks No. 6 In National Business Ranking

BATON ROUGE, La. — Today, Gov. Bobby Jindal recognized Louisiana's No. 6 ranking in a national business climate survey as evidence of the state's continued strength as a prime place for business investment, job creation and economic development. Area Development magazine's 2012 Top States for Doing Business report surveys the nation's leading site selection consultants, and their responses placed Louisiana No. 6 in the nation.

Gov. Jindal said, "The latest ranking from Area Development is yet another example that our work to make Louisiana the best place in the world to do business and find a job is paying off. We've removed burdensome taxes on business, reduced government spending, enhanced our governmental ethics laws, revamped our workforce development programs and passed landmark education reforms that will give every child in Louisiana the opportunity to get a great education. We have made great progress, but our work is not done yet. We won't stop until we're number one and that means taking on our next challenge of reforming our tax code so that it's fairer, flatter and simpler."

In addition to the overall Top States for Doing Business ranking, Area Development ranked states along several specific dimensions. For example, Louisiana ranks No. 1 in the U.S. for Cooperative State Government, No. 2 for Incentive Programs, No. 3 for Workforce Development Programs, No. 3 for Speed of Permitting and No. 4 for Cost of Doing Business. In the major evaluation categories, Louisiana ranks No. 2 for Leading in the Economic Recovery, No. 4 for Overall Business Environment and No. 5 for Overall Labor Climate.

Area Development editors described Louisiana's progress as remarkable because the state had not ranked in the Top 10 nationally before 2011.

"Louisiana has taken a very aggressive, targeted approach to improve its business climate over the past five years, and those efforts are clearly paying off," the magazine's editors wrote. "Most notably, the state ranked first for its cooperative state government and second for both its incentives programs and as a state that is leading in the economic recovery."

Earlier this year, Louisiana received its highest-ever business climate ranking when Business Facilities placed the state No. 5 in its 2012 Rankings Report.Business Facilities also ranked LED FastStart™ as the No. 1 state workforce development training program in the U.S. for the third straight year and rated Louisiana No. 1 for economic growth potential and No. 1 for digital media performance.

In addition to Louisiana's three Top 10 business climate rankings, the state has recorded rapid improvement in other leading rankings of state business climates. Louisiana now stands at its highest-ever position in business climate rankings published by Area DevelopmentBusiness FacilitiesChief Executive, CNBC,Forbes, Pollina Corporate Real Estate and Site Selection.

Since 2008, Louisiana has secured economic development projects that are creating more than 54,000 new direct and indirect jobs, more than $13.2 billion in new capital investment and hundreds of millions of dollars in new annual sales for small businesses across the state.

Last year, Site Selection named LED the top-performing state economic development agency in the U.S. LED has been ranked among the five top-performing state economic development agencies in the U.S. for the last three years in a row.

About Area Development
Since 1965, Area Development has been a leading source of corporate site selection and relocation intelligence for an audience of executive readers. Published bimonthly, the magazine has more than 45,000 executive subscribers and is complemented by an award-winning custom publishing group. For more on the Top States for Doing Business rankings, visit the Area Development website.