|"I only know how to steal money!"|
If you want to attract more business to your state would you hit up a country in economic free fall or would you try and attract investors with liquidity and visit nations that have money to spare?
Apparently Florida Governor Rick Scott has decided to ignore the latter and instead take a group of 60 people to Florida's 33rd highest global trading partner - Spain.
In case you haven't read the news, Spain's economy, while being the fourth largest in Europe, has been in a recession and forecasts show it will remain in a recession until next year
Angeline Benoit wrote the following for Bloomberg Businessweek:
Gross domestic product will contract 0.8 percent in 2013 after shrinking 1.6 percent this year, the Paris-based OECD said in a report today. That compares with the International Monetary Fund’s forecast for 0.1 percent growth after contracting 1.8 percent this year.Spain’s borrowing costs have jumped more than 100 basis points since Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said on March 2 that the country will miss its 2012 budget-deficit target, approaching the 7 percent level that heralded bailouts in Greece, Ireland and Portugal.“A further increase in the risk premium on yields of Spanish government bonds would raise private-sector funding costs and deepen the recession,” the OECD said.Private consumption will fall 1.8 percent next year and government consumption 4.5 percent as a result of austerity measures and deleveraging in the private sector, the OECD said. Unemployment will rise to 25.3 percent, it said.Spain's unemployment rate is almost triple that of Florida's and currently the Euro is worth less than the dollar, meaning that any company in Spain would get more for their money in Spain - not to mention a vast pool of workers to pick from.
Not only that, but Rick Scott signed into law a bill that "prohibits state and local governments from hiring companies that work in Cuba or Syria for contracts worth at least $1 million." Spain is Cuba's 4th largest trading partner. Scott's anti-trade law can really damper Spanish businesses from coming to Florida, reducing the number of eligible businesses that can do business.
Let's face it, if you are a large company in Spain you are probably doing business in Cuba, which means you can't do business in Florida, unless of course Rick Scott won't try to persuade businesses to move operations overseas with tax breaks, subsidies, and government contracts, but even then, Florida's slow economic growth and high unemployment are a wonderful selling points. Don't you think so?