SC business briefs: Haley heading to Canada in March to recruit jobs

February 19, 2014 

SC Governor Civil Rights

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley

ALICE KEENEY — AP

Haley plans Canada trip to push for business, jobs

Gov. Nikki Haley is heading to Canada to recruit jobs next month, her office said Tuesday. She will join three S.C. Department of Commerce officials and former U.S. ambassador to Canada David Wilkins on the three-day trip that starts March 31 in Toronto before she heads to Ottawa and Montreal. Wilkins, now an attorney in private practice in Greenville, is paying for his portion of the trip, the governor’s office said. Haley will meet with companies that already operate in the state as well as new prospects. She also will speak to business groups. This is her first economic development trip to Canada – the state’s second-biggest export partner last year with $3.7 billion in goods shipped, according to Commerce. China was first. Canadian companies have nearly 100 corporate plants and offices in the state. South Carolina’s Canada office closed during Gov. Mark Sanford’s administration so it is “important for us to make these visits and get that face time because our competing states have full-time staff and offices in Canada,” commerce spokeswoman Allison Skipper said. Haley has gone on four overseas recruiting trips since becoming governor, including aviation and automotive shows in Europe and an economic-development conference in Japan.

Nuclear plant deals expected

The Energy Department is poised to approve $6.5 billion in federal loan guarantees for the first nuclear power plants built from scratch in this country in more than three decades. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz was expected to announce final approval of the deal at a speech on Wednesday, a day before he visits the $14 billion Vogtle nuclear plant now under construction in eastern Georgia. Three government officials familiar with the deal confirmed its details Tuesday. They asked not to be identified because the deal has not been made public. Atlanta-based Southern Co. is building the plant with several partners about 30 miles southeast of Augusta, Ga. The project – along with a similar one being built in Fairfield County by S.C. Electric & Gas – is widely considered a major test of whether the industry can build nuclear plants without the delays and cost overruns that plagued earlier rounds of building in the 1970s.

Wash. gets Boeing wing center

Boeing says it has picked Everett, Wash., as the site to build wings for its new 777X aircraft. The company said Tuesday that the wing center will be located north of its Everett factory and sustain thousands of area jobs in the years to come. Construction on the new facility is scheduled to begin later this year. On Jan. 3, area Boeing machinists narrowly approved a contract in which they conceded some benefits in order to secure assembly of the new 777X in Washington state. More than 20 other states, including South Carolina, made a bid for the work.

Fed tightens rules for foreign banks

The Federal Reserve will require the largest foreign banks operating in the United States to hold higher levels of capital reserves to protect against potential loan losses. The stricter regulations the Fed adopted Tuesday are intended to prevent the types of threats that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis. The requirements are similar to those already adopted for big U.S. banks.

Andrew Shain and The Associated Press contributed.

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