Despite rising costs, Michigan economic development chief remains bullish
A state executive met with business leaders at the Mid-Michigan Economic Development Corporation in Mount Pleasant on Wednesday.
Quentin Messer is the CEO and President of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). The visit was part of a larger initiative in his department to meet with business leaders and discuss economic challenges.
Russia's invasion of Ukraine has caused global market prices to rise and the Federal Reserve recently increased interest rates. On top of rising inflation.
Messer said he is not ignoring the pain these macro-economic factors are inflicting on businesses and consumers, but he remains optimistic.
"What I do believe is that Michigan's overall competitiveness is improving," said Messer. "I look at what we've passed...the bipartisan legislation to store legislation, and not only allowed us to be able to compete, but also provided relief for small businesses."
One area Messer thinks the MEDC can help alleviate some stress in the economy is the agri-business sector. Many producers currently rely on out-of-state shipping and processing for their products, that are then sold back to Michigan stores.
"We need to try to capture as much of the agricultural spin in Michigan," said Messer. "Farm to table, let's figure out how we can get the produce and other things to restaurants here."
The MEDC is planning to launch more small businesses resources in the coming weeks.