New Report Shows Big Impact of Oregon Ports

A comprehensive new study shows the importance of Oregon’s ports to the state
economy, and highlights opportunities for enhancing port operations in coming years.
Business Oregon released its report on the Economic Benefits and Needs of Oregon
Public Ports, prepared by the University of Oregon’s Institute for Policy, Research, &
Engagement (IPRE). The report showed Oregon’s 23 ports directly support 106,799 jobs,
contribute $7.1 billion in labor income, and support a total of $19 billion in total economic

The diversity of economic activities at Oregon’s 23 coastal, river, and dry land ports is
unique, stretching traditional definitions of ports. It’s not only maritime activity and
facilitating the movement of global trade for Oregon goods—ports manage industrial land,
provide community facilities, and support recreation and tourism throughout the state.
Each Oregon port is unique in what it provides and no two Oregon ports are the same.
Ports have a foundational role in domestic and global trade and serve a vital role in the
state’s economy. The U.S. Census foreign trade data estimated that in 2021, Oregon
exported $25 billion of goods. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that Oregon is
one of the most trade-dependent states in the U.S. and that 84% of all goods exported
were from small or medium-sized companies. Oregon ports generated more than $380
million in state tax revenues and $264 million in local tax revenues in 2021.

IPRE partnered with Business Oregon to assess economic impacts using the software
application IMPLAN (IMpact for PLANning). IMPLAN is a widely accepted tool that
estimates multiplier effects of economic activities. Multipliers estimate the impact that a
change in economic activity will have on total economic output. The IMPLAN statewide
model showed that in addition to the 106,800 jobs directly employed at Oregon ports there
was an additional 113,000 jobs supported through business and employee spending.
Combined, Oregon ports support over 220,000 jobs or 11.7% of total statewide

The study was created with assistance from the Oregon Ports Association, Columbia
Pacific Economic Development, Port of Portland, Port of The Dalles, Port of Tillamook
Bay, and Port of Coos Bay, among others.

Oregon’s public ports are a unique economic asset that impacts regions throughout the
state. Many ports have the opportunity and desire to enhance their services, and
potentially grow, which can expand their economic footprint. But Oregon’s public ports
also face key challenges that can hinder their operations and aspirations. Some needs
identified in a survey conducted as part of the report show that dredging, planned capital
improvements, and dock improvements were top concerns for port managers. The report
then examines the connectivity of the needs and provides findings that intersect needs
around infrastructure, funding, and current facilities.

To read the comprehensive report on the Economic Benefits and Needs of Oregon Public
Ports and view an interactive map of Oregon’s public ports, please visit

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