Florida is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States, bordering Alabama to the northwest and Georgia to the north. It was the 27th state admitted to the United States. Much of the land mass of the state is a large peninsula with the Gulf of Mexico to the west, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east.It is nicknamed the "Sunshine State" because of its generally warm climate subtropical in the northern and central regions of the state, with a true tropical climate in the southern portion. The state has four large urban areas, a number of smaller industrial cities, and many small towns.
The United States Census Bureau estimates that the state population was 18,328,340 in 2008, ranking Florida as the fourth most populous state in the U.S.Tallahassee is the state capital, Jacksonville is the largest city, and the Miami metropolitan area is the largest metropolitan area.
Through state-of-the-art multi-modal transportation infrastructure of highways, railways, seaports, airports, a spaceport, and one of the most advanced telecommunications networks in the world, Florida enables international businesses to easily connect with their worldwide customers in every possible way. In addition, there are more direct flights connecting Florida with Latin America and the Caribbean than all other U.S. states combined.Cosmopolitan Environment: Florida is a vibrant international banking center, a diplomatic hub with a Consular Corps representing some 78 nations, a world-renowned tourism destination with millions of visitors every year, and home to a diverse and multilingual population.
As a truly global state, Florida is also the second most active participant in the City/Sister State programs in the United States, underscoring its worldwide connections and open business and cultural environment.
International Education: Nearly 27,000 international students were enrolled at Florida colleges and universities in the 2007-08 academic year. Many graduate and undergraduate academic institutions in Florida are also ranked on U.S. News and World Report list of Best Colleges for International Business programs.
Trade and Investment Network: With a vast network of 12 international offices, 7 trade offices located around the state, and 15 country-specific websites (use International Websites drop-down menu), Enterprise Florida Inc. offers many vital services for businesses looking to expand internationally.
Florida is a leader in foreign direct investment, attracting companies from all over the world. Ranking 9th among all U.S. states in total holdings by majority foreign-owned firms and 6th in employment by them in 2007 (most recent data), Florida has emerged as a hotspot for foreign direct investment (FDI).
International Trade: Merchandise trade valued at $103 billion flowed through Florida's airports and seaports in 2009, making the state one of the world's leaders in international trade. Enterprise Florida and its network of economic development partners around the state provide valuable exporting assistance services to Florida-based companies looking to expand their markets internationally.
Florida's international businesses enjoy access to the second largest FTZ network in the country, encompassing 20 Foreign Trade Zones, mostly located at or near its seaports and international airports (map). There, value can be added to foreign goods tariff free before shipping them on to another country.
Worldwide Connectivity: International trade and FDI thrive in Florida due in part to the state's excellent infrastructure