Population: 1.8 million
Border States: Kentucky, Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland
Major Industries: Coal, Steel/Aluminum, Chemicals, Timber, Retail
Labor Force and Productivity
West Virginia's labor force is as respected as its chemical industry. Superior product quality and a strong work ethic are the major factors that attracted companies more than eighty years ago, and continues to be an important consideration for new businesses. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce-Bureau of Economic Analysis, each employee of West Virginia's chemical industry produces $7,900 more annually than the national average. This is due to high productivity, a combination of technology and the local work ethic.
There are several public institutions of higher learning in close proximity to West Virginia Operations. West Virginia State University borders the manufacturing site in Institute. Marshall University Graduate College borders the Technology Park in South Charleston. The school was built on land donated by Union Carbide. WVU Institute of Technology is located in Montgomery, WV and provides workforce training and engineering programs. Dow has established a partnership with University of Charleston, a private institution, to establish a business speaker's bureau. The colleges and universities have joined with the industry to look at workforce needs and develop training programs.
Business and Economic Development
Investing in West Virginia is an intelligent decision. Central West Virginia offers tremendous benefits to companies that locate here: availability of land and infrastructure, an excellent labor force, collaboration with academia to educate engineers and other workers, as well as an outstanding quality of life. Companies seeking a new site to expand, relocate or build new facilities will discover that West Virginia offers a promising future, based on a history of success.
The chemical industry supports a total of 22,500 jobs in Kanawha and Putnam counties alone – equaling 59.8% of all manufacturing jobs in the Kanawha Valley. The average employee of the chemical industry earned $60,500 in 1999. This is over twice the area's average annual wage. Most important to West Virginians is that the chemical industry supports the 22,500 highest paying jobs.
With regard to production, every dollar of output generated by the chemical industry, an additional $.72 in output is produced in Kanawha and Putnam counties through indirect and induced effects. This amounts to additional output in the region valued at $2.1 billion. The Kanawha Valley chemical industry's total annual impact on regional output, therefore, is measured at $5 billion. The direct impact is $2.9 billion but the indirect impact is $5 billion.