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Paper presents a preliminary report on a project at the University of Texas which was then developing a comprehensive database on regional location incentives and relative regional competiveness.
The paper presents data gathered recently from a cross-section of local economic development institutions worldwide. It illustrates the range and magnitude of relative costs of production and of some of the incentives offered by both low-wage regions and completive high-wage areas. It illustrates that incentive sin the U.S. are more restricted than those provided by competing regions; 3) that the full range of cost differentials are not directly correlated with relative cost differentials, 3) that the future potential of rural and small-town U.S. locations should not be dismissed for many plant location decisions.
Policy recommendations for the U.S. include massively expanded re-training for those out of the educational system, federally funded development incentives for areas disadvantaged by global restructuring, matched by innovative local efforts to improve workplace conditions, productivity, and profitability.