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Magazine Article Discusses Outlook for Lehigh Valley’s Post-COVID Growth

By Colin McEvoy on February 1, 2022

The Lehigh Valley is well-positioned for continued post-pandemic economic growth, and the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) is working to make sure everybody knows why.

That’s why LVEDC President & CEO Don Cunningham contributed a column for the most recent issue of Network Magazine, a high-end, business leader magazine connecting leaders and connecting business-to-business opportunities in the Lehigh Valley.

The cover of the Winter 2022 issue of Network Magazine.

The article was published in Network’s Winter 2022 magazine, released in mid-January. Cunningham highlights the economic changes as well as new opportunities created by the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the Lehigh Valley is responding to them.

The column also discusses LVEDC’s new three-year strategic plan, the Lehigh Valley’s four high-value target sectors, LVEDC’s targeted marketing campaigns, the organization’s talent strategies development efforts, and other economic trends and topics.

Network Magazine’s goal is to provide readers with the latest topics from some of the area’s leaders in accounting, banking & finance, insurance, legal, medical, political, real estate, international, leadership, entrepreneurship, and technology, while providing a way to connect these industries with each other.

A brief excerpt of the article can be found below. The full article can be read here or in the Network Magazine issue, the full edition of which can be viewed or downloaded here.

 

The economic change wrought by the global COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges and opportunities for economic growth both across the nation and the world, and that is certainly the case in the Lehigh Valley as well.

Change that was taking place was accelerated. The movement away from shopping in stores to ordering online was super charged as people needed to avoid places crowded with other people.

Office workers began working from home, sometimes in completely different states than their employers. The availability of workers, particularly those with the right skills, became more challenging, shifting the supply and demand balance toward employees, driving up wages, benefits, and bonuses among employers caught in an accelerating competition for talent.

Global supply chains became disrupted ending the reliable shipment of goods across oceans. Just in time inventory is evolving to “just in case” as companies realize they need to stockpile and pre-order goods such as pharmaceuticals, computer chips and toilet paper to hedge against emergencies.

Like all metropolitan areas across the country, the Lehigh Valley will have to grapple with these new economic challenges. But the region is positioned well for continued economic growth in both traditional areas of strength and in new sectors emerging in a post-pandemic economy of rapid change and development.

Toward this end, the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) has recently adopted its new 3-year Strategic Plan. It includes a wide range of goals, priorities, and initiatives, including targeted economic development and growth in key sectors such as life sciences and advanced manufacturing.

 

Visit here or read Network Magazine online for the full article.

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Lehigh ValleyQuick Facts

By the Numbers
$43.3 Billion

2020 Gross Domestic Product

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City Center Lehigh Valley
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10.6% of Labor Force
Employed in Manufacturing

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Lehigh Valley Health Network
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$3.8 Billion

Exports in 2019

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Air Products
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Lehigh Valley Electricians
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$66,865

Median Household Income

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PPL Electric Utilities
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676,700

Population

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347,612

Labor Force

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26.6% of Labor Force
Employed in "Eds & Meds" sectors

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5,073

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UGI
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NFI
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14% of the total community college degrees awarded in PA

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$7.1 Billion

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69th largest metropolitan area in the U.S. by population

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10,754 degrees awarded by Lehigh Valley colleges (2017-18 academic year)

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82,270 employed in "Eds & Meds" sectors

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149,000

Population between ages 18 and 34

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