Governor Edwards Recognized for Job Attraction Efforts

November 03, 2017

GEISMAR, LA – Governor John Bel Edwards today became the first Louisiana governor to issue an Open Investment Policy statement, declaring that foreign direct investment (FDI) benefits Louisianans and pledging to provide fair and equitable treatment to all investors under the law. The governor made the historic announcement at Shell Chemicals’ Geismar facility.

“Governor Edwards’ declaration sets Louisiana apart from other states in attracting job-creating foreign direct investment,” said Jonathan Samford, vice president of the Organization for International Investment (OFII). “His proclamation today reaffirms the state’s reputation as being ‘open for business’ and furthers the governor’s efforts in creating high-quality job opportunities. Governor Edwards understands that Louisiana can compete and win in the international economy.”

During today’s remarks in Geismar, Governor Bel Edwards highlighted why Louisiana is a strong location for international companies to set up operations.

“We are so proud of all Louisiana employers who contribute to our economy every day, but this is a special opportunity to recognize the great contributions that foreign-owned companies make in Louisiana,” Gov. Edwards said. “FDI operations — from Shell and BASF, to Shintech and Sasol, to Benteler and Dyno Nobel — have pumped many billions of dollars in capital projects alone into our economy in recent years. They are among the 500 foreign-owned companies operating in Louisiana that are directly responsible for 74,300 jobs in our state. In an era of increasing globalization, it’s essential for us to show leadership and support of foreign direct investment in Louisiana in a positive, open and fair manner.”

According to the latest U.S. data, international companies like Shell, BASF and Siemens employ 74,300 Louisiana workers, and job growth among these international employers has increased nearly 21 percent in the past five years. Louisiana has received more than $60 billion in FDI since 2008, ranking number one among all states in FDI per capita.

Today’s event was held at the Shell Chemicals Geismar manufacturing facility.

“We were honored to host Governor Edwards today as he issued his Open Investment Policy statement,” said Rhoman Hardy, general manager of the Shell Chemical Geismar facility. “With more than 100 years of history in Louisiana and over 7,000 employees and retirees in the state, Shell is committed to the communities where we operate, through both financial and social investments.”

Per OFII, Governor John Bel Edwards is the seventh governor to issue an Open Investment Policy statement at the state level and the first to issue one in Louisiana history. These statements acknowledge the importance of international investment for U.S. economic growth and provide clear signals to international firms that states welcome their job-creating investment. 

About OFII

Created more than 25 years ago, the Organization for International Investment (OFII) is a non-profit business association in Washington, D.C. representing the U.S. operations of many of the world's leading global companies, which insource millions of American jobs.  OFII works to ensure the United States remains the top location for global investment.  As such, OFII advocates for fair, non-discriminatory treatment of foreign-based companies and promotes policies that will encourage them to establish U.S. operations, increase American employment, and boost U.S. economic growth.  For more information, please visit

About Shell

The Royal Dutch/Shell Group (the "Shell Group") is a global group of energy and petrochemicals companies with functions in more than 100 countries and territories. Our aim is to meet the energy needs of society, in ways that are economically, socially and environmentally viable, now and into the future. Shell Chemicals ranks among the world's largest petrochemical operations. We focus on the production of bulk petrochemicals and their delivery to large industrial customers who use them to make many of the essential materials of our modern world. The Shell Group’s chemical business operations in the U.S. are performed through Shell Chemical LP, one of nearly 70 companies engaged in chemicals businesses for the Shell Group.

The Shell Geismar manufacturing site, located next to the Mississippi River, some 20 miles below Baton Rouge, Louisiana, is a stand-alone chemicals manufacturing plant operated by Shell Chemical LP.  The plant began operations in 1967 and has been expanded several times during its history.  Products made at the Geismar Plant are used by customers to produce a variety of personal care items, soaps, shampoos, and household cleaning solutions.  The primary feedstock for the Geismar Chemical Plant is ethylene that is delivered to the site via a pipeline operated by Shell.