The Port of Charleston brings $6.5 billion to the Pee Dee

The Port of Charleston brings $6.5 billion to the Pee Dee

FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Expanding the Port of Charleston could mean more jobs and a stronger economy not just for the Low County, but for our area.

"One out of every 14 jobs in the Pee Dee… is directly or indirectly tied to the port. It's phenomenal. That's what the port is about…. all about growing South Carolina," said Senator Hugh Leatherman, Chairman of the South Carolina Senate Finance Committee.

On Wednesday, the South Carolina Port Authority visited Florence; those leaders, along with local legislators, discussed how the expansion of the port will and is impacting the work force and economy.

"Manufacturing jobs supported by a port generate good income, so it's good that they grow. We have a great manufacturing story in this state and they are a big supporter of this state," said Jim Newsome, President and CEO of South Carolina Port Authority.

Earlier this year, a study was conducted by the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina. The study showed how the Port of Charleston has lasting impacts in a variety of areas across the state, including the Pee Dee.

"Well the port means to South Carolina and the Pee Dee Region that the state has a very strategic assets and is going to have an easier time recruiting business to the state," said Joseph Von Nessen, who works at the USC.

The team at USC determined through that study that in the Pee Dee alone more than 22 thousand jobs were tied back to the port of Charleston.

"The Pee Dee Region benefits from that because we see more  companies that consider this region of the state and wants to have access  to the port so it's going to benefit those companies coming in which is going to provide more jobs to  south Caronia's and people living in the region," Von Nessen said.

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