AQUA BOOK 2015 - Page 40

TOWARD A NEW REGIONAL ECONOMIC ORDER B y 2018, the impacts of those industrial facilities will shift from primarily constructionrelated employment, which is temporary in nature, to permanent, manufacturing-oriented employment. A key distinction of those capital intensive heavy manufacturing facilities is its high value added relative to other industries, such as retail trade. Moreover, unlike retail trade, those industries are primarily export oriented, so that they will add the underlying sources of longterm regional economic growth. PARADIGM SHIFT The economy of the Coastal Bend is about to transform into a heavy manufacturing center with increasing exports to overseas markets. The economic gravity of Corpus Christi will also be shifting from the more populated Nueces County to the less developed San Patricio County. Should Texas’ shale oil and natural gas supplies continue to flow into the region as feedstock and energy input, those newly developed industrial facilities would continue to be drivers for the regional economy. 38 . . .this development in Corpus Christi marked a milestone for transforming Corpus Christi into an energy hub. . . In addition to industrial materials, such as iron, steel and plastic, energy companies are capitalizing on the logistical advantage of the Port of Corpus Christi for processing the abundant supply of shale oil and gas in South Texas. In May 2015, Cheniere Energy Inc. received federal approval to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from its facility under construction near the city of Gregory. After more than 40 years of a ban on oil exports by the U.S. government, this development in Corpus Christi marked a milestone for transforming Corpus Christi into an energy hub for the rest of the world. Annual Review of South Texas Economy