Raleigh, N.C.

Yesterday (September 30) marked the start of 'North Carolina Manufacturing Week,’ as proclaimed by Governor Roy Cooper . The announcement brings attention to a business sector that employs nearly 465,000 North Carolinians, represents 22 percent of the state’s total private-sector economic output and offers young people a challenging and rewarding career path.

“North Carolina’s manufacturers have long been a key pillar of the state’s economy,” said Governor Cooper. “With manufacturing now such a high-tech field, we must continue to invest in strong education and workforce training to provide the skilled workers manufacturers need to keep growing and thriving in North Carolina.”

North Carolina is home to the largest manufacturing workforce in the Southeast and the 8th largest in the United States – employing 464,947 workers. Manufacturing employment in the state has increased 6.7% over the past five years. The manufacturing sector makes significant contributions to the state’s economy, accounting for 22 percent of private sector contribution to North Carolina’s gross state product, or $106.7 billion. That figure is the fifth-highest in the United States. Manufacturing is also a major driver of exports for North Carolina. In 2017, North Carolina manufacturers exported $30.8 billion in goods to international buyers.

Many North Carolina manufacturers and supporting organizations are staging open house and other events this week leading up to the national Manufacturing Day celebration on Friday, October 5. Earlier today (October 1), North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland spoke at a re-dedication ceremony for the Biopharmaceutical Training Lab at Johnston County’s Workforce Development Center in Clayton, marking the renovation of a key manufacturing training center.

“Today’s advanced manufacturing facilities are clean and high-tech, and offer good jobs to those with the right skills,” said North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland. “To keep manufacturing strong in North Carolina, we must continue to tell both students and their parents that a manufacturing career is both worthwhile and much more modern than in years past.”

North Carolina’s commitment to manufacturers has long been demonstrated by favorable education and business policies. The North Carolina Community College System offers more than 800 courses covering manufacturing skills in biotechnology, aviation and defense, pharmaceuticals, financial services, logistics, IT, and advanced manufacturing. Community colleges features custom training programs that draw on the latest technology and advances in manufacturing production to ensure North Carolina’s manufacturing workers stay a step ahead of the cutting edge.

The National Manufacturers Association, the country’s largest trade organization for manufacturers, has published a database of manufacturing events being held in the state this week. The database is available online here.

Governor Cooper's proclamation can be reviewed online here.


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