State of Georgia economy tied to war - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

State of Georgia economy tied to war

October 22, 2002

Albany -- The state's leading economic forecaster says Georgia's recovery from the recession is tied to the potential war in Iraq. The forecaster says the economy in Georgia, and the entire nation, will not grow until after the questions about an invasion of Iraq are answered.

Dr. Rajeev Dhawan told students at Darton College that they will be best served by continuing their education for the next year, because business downsizing will continue at least through the winter. He said because business CEO's are watching the possibility of war against Iraq, hiring new employees will be almost non-existent.

Dr. Dwahan said "Because of the war uncertainty, the C.E.O.'s are not doing any hiring, not doing any capital budgeting, they're not putting out new products. What you don't have is growth, what you have is maintaining."

Dr. Dhawan said Georgia's economy, especially in Atlanta, has suffered because of it's dependence on transportation, tourism, and telecommunications...industries that have all suffered since 9-11.

But Dhawan says a quick victory against Iraq will kick start the recovery into high gear. "New people getting jobs, coming out and buying houses. Existing home prices will go up. New homes will be built. Developers will be happy, the Chamber of Commerce will be happy. County and state will be collecting taxes."

For the college students listening to Dr. Dhawan's forecast, they heard the message, and will continue their education.

Economics student Chris Nayor said "I think in the long run it's gonna help me more, because it's gonna be picking up when I come out of school." Vocal performance student Heather Colvin said "So I only have about three more years, and then I'll be able to go into the job market."

Dr. Dhawan said Albany's economy should stay strong because of defense industry and health care jobs in the region. Dr. Dhawan says if the war against Iraq is settled soon, the economic recovery could be in full swing in Georgia by next spring.

posted at 4:05 by jimw@walb.com

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