Manufacturing is a critical part of both our national and our regional economy, so it’s appropriate that we should recognize and celebrate its importance with a national Manufacturing Day. The United States still has the largest manufacturing sector of any country in the world, including China. Manufacturing provides about 1-in-6 private sector jobs in America—almost 12 million direct and an estimated 5+ million indirect jobs for a total of 17.2 million jobs. Manufacturing contributed 11.9% of U.S. gross domestic product in 2012. The average American manufacturing worker earned over 28% more the average worker in all industries earned in 2011.
Here in WNY, manufacturing provides over 67,000 jobs, more than 10% of all Nonfarm employment, according to the latest numbers from NYS DOL. The percentages are even higher in Chautauqua (18%), Allegany (13%) and Cattaraugus (12%) Counties. In Buffalo-Niagara, manufacturing generates approximately $7 billion in gross domestic product annually, making it the number one economic engine in the area.
In short, manufacturing matters in WNY. So take a minute tomorrow on Manufacturing Day to thank a local manufacturer for the critical contribution they make to our regional economy and by extension to our quality of life.