The Governor’s Office of Military Affairs (GOMA) and the Mississippi Defense Initiative (MDI) at the University of Southern Mississippi have announced plans to strengthen and grow Mississippi’s defense economy.
In the recently released The Future Fight: Mississippi’s Defense Economy Strategic Plan, a new strategy has been developed to capitalize on trends in national defense and the security arena. It presents an economic and community development approach to growing the defense industry and strengthening defense communities simultaneously.
While primarily authored by GOMA and the MDI, others assisted with the strategy and will continue to add to the success of the plan moving forward.
Notable contributors include stakeholders from across academia as well as local, state, and federal government, defense-related industries, and all branches of the military.
“Mississippi is proud to be a leader in the defense industry. This new strategic plan is about laying the foundation for our state to compete for new and relevant defense investment,” Governor Tate Reeves said. “We want our research centers to develop military technologies, our manufacturing sector to produce them, and our military installations to deploy them. Mississippi and our economic engine stand ready to support our military in any way we can.”
The Future Fight has three significant areas of recommendations to improve the state’s approach to the defense industry. Under the plan, the state will continue to build up communities with military installations, market the state to defense-related industries and focus on systems that encourage veteran employment.
“Mississippi’s efforts to align the state’s defense economic sector to the growing trends seen in our national defense strategy are commendable and noteworthy,” Capt. Timothy B. Moore, USN, Chair of the Mississippi Installation Commanders Council, said. “A strong state and local economy around our nation’s military installations further strengthens our national security and benefits the families of our military service members.”