MOKENA – March 31, 2011. Governor Quinn today reaffirmed his commitment to doubling Illinois’ exports by 2015 during an address to the President’s Export Council Subcommittee on Workforce Readiness. The Governor also highlighted his ongoing work to invest in Illinois’ workforce and improve our infrastructure.
“Increased exports and a modern workforce are critical to our efforts to boost Illinois’ economy and create jobs,” said Governor Quinn. “Through historic investment in a skilled workforce and 21st century transportation infrastructure, we are ensuring that Illinois’ businesses have the tools they need to grow and succeed in the global marketplace.”
In 2010, Illinois exports, which support more than half a million jobs, jumped nearly 20 percent to $49.8 billion. Illinois ranks first in the Midwest for exports and foreign direct investment, and sixth overall in the nation for exports. Exports accounted for 8.2 percent of Illinois’ gross state product (GSP) in 2009.
Governor Quinn recently signed an agreement to boost trade with Manitoba, Canada. Illinois’ exports to Manitoba totaled $1.38 billion last year, and exports to Canada overall totaled $14.7 billion in 2010, making it Illinois’ largest trading partner.
Earlier this year, Governor Quinn welcomed a delegation of Chinese government and business leaders to Illinois to announce that more than a dozen Illinois providers of soy products entered into sales agreements with buyers from 24 Chinese companies. In the first nine months of 2010, Illinois exports to China reached $2.33 billion, a 37.5 percent increase compared to the same period in 2009. Illinois ranks among the top five states in agricultural exports to China.
Governor Quinn’s fiscal year 2012 budget proposal increases investment in Illinois’ Employer Training Investment Program (ETIP) to help ensure that Illinois’ workers have the education, training and skills necessary to compete in the modern economy. The ETIP program reimburses Illinois companies for up to 50 percent of the cost of training their employees to give them the skills needed to remain current in new technologies and business practices.
Governor Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! capital program represents a historic investment in Illinois’ transportation infrastructure. To date the plan has repaired 4,800 miles of roads and 500 bridges, creating more than 135,000 jobs. The program will create more than 400,000 jobs over six years.
The President's Export Council is the principal national advisory committee on international trade. The Council advises President Obama on government policies and programs that affect U.S. trade performance; promotes export expansion; and provides a forum for discussing and resolving trade-related problems among the business, industrial, agricultural, labor and government sectors.