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Foreign Direct Investment

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2022 – 2023 Investment Guide

Why Illinois? Illinois is a global economic powerhouse with world class infrastructure, a highly educated workforce and outstanding quality of life.

  • 19th Largest Economy in the World
  • #1 State in the Midwest for New and Expanding Companies
  • 37 Fortune 500 Headquarters  and over 2,000 international companies from 74 countries 
  • 6.4 Million dedicated, innovative and educated workforce
  • Home to 3 National Laboratories – USDA, Argonne & Fermilab
  • Only State with All 7 Class 1 Freight Railroads

The Illinois Department of Commerce, Office of Trade and Investment (OTI) promotes Illinois on a global stage. Leveraging the state’s unique transportation infrastructure, location, talented workforce, access to key markets, and positive business climate, OTI supports businesses interested in establishing or expanding their presence in Illinois. 

Illinois’ team located in its six regional offices recruit investments across the world from Belgium, Canada, China, Israel, Japan and Mexico and together with the Office of Business Development provide companies with information on incentive packages, site location referrals, and the availability and advantages of its eight Foreign Trade Zones located across the state. 

To learn more about Illinois’ FDI assistance please contact Margo Markopoulos, Director, Office of Trade and Investment – 312.636.9456 – margo.markopoulos@illinois.gov  or any member of the Illinois International Team.

You may also use our digital Foreign Direct Investment intake form.

Technical Assistance

  • Location and building identification support
  • Key regulations and policy insight
  • Access to critical governmental agencies (e.g. IDOT)

Incentive Programs

  • Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE)
  • Business Development Public Infrastructure (BDPIP)
  • Enterprise Zones and High Impact Business (HIB)
  • Large Business Development Program (LBDP)

Advantage Illinois (SMEs)

  • Capital Access Program
  • Participation Loan Program
  • Collateral Support Program

Employee Training

  • Technical assistance to training and hiring resources
  • Employer Training Investment Program

Foreign Trade Zones

  • Sites where foreign and domestic merchandise is considered international trade and not subject to U.S. customs duties
  • Eight FTZs and 29 subzones are located throughout Illinois

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