U.S. Marine Economy is a Big GDP Contributor, Report Shows

The marine economy is not just a fast-growing area for the United States, but a major contributor to the U.S. gross domestic product, accounting for about $397 billion to the GDP in 2019, according to results from the first official Marine Economy Satellite Account recently released by two Department of Commerce agencies.

“America’s strong marine economy is absolutely vital for building back better,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “President Biden sees the immense value and potential of strengthening America’s blue economy, and this administration will continue to take actions to combat the climate crisis, conserve our oceans and protect our coastal communities.”

NOAA and the Bureau of Economic Analysis experts pulled data from 2014-2019 in 10 sectors where businesses rely on the nation’s oceans, coasts and Great Lakes.

From 2018 to 2019, marine-related GDP rose 4.2%. That’s 2.2% faster than the total U.S. GDP with inflation, according to the agencies.

The businesses that were part of the report accounted for $665.7 billion in total sales and supported 2.4 million jobs in 2019. That includes tourism and recreation, including recreational fishing, which generated $235 billion in sales, offshore minerals with $93 billion, transportation and warehousing with $64 billion, and commercial Ship and boat building with $31 billion, according to the agencies.

“These statistics are further proof that our waters are vital for America’s economy,” said Nicole LeBoeuf, acting director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service. “It is nearly impossible to go a single day without eating, wearing or using items that come from or through our ports and coastal communities.”

By Pacific Maritime