Columbia Basin Industry Employment Forecast, 2017-2027

by Dallas Fridley

July 23, 2018

The two-county Columbia Basin area (Morrow and Umatilla) is expected to add 4,800 jobs by 2027, with total employment rising to 39,410. The 10-year forecast pegs growth in the Columbia Basin area at 12 percent, matching Oregon’s 12 percent increase.

Employment in the Columbia Basin totaled 39,410 in the 2017 base year. Private industry employment represented about 74 percent or 29,320 jobs. Self-employment represented 1,990 or 9 percent and government held 8,100 jobs or about 21 percent.

Within private industry, natural resources and mining is expected to add the most jobs, rising by 840 jobs or 17 percent in 10 years to average 5,830 in 2027. Trade, transportation, and utilities will grow by 790 jobs, rising to 7,940, an increase of 11 percent. Education and health services (+640), manufacturing (+630), leisure and hospitality (+290), construction (+230), information (+180), professional and business services (+170), and other services (+100) are all projected to add jobs over the 2017 to 2027 forecast.
Government is expected to rise by 600 jobs between 2017 and 2027 to 8,700 jobs, led by an increase of 500 jobs in local government. Self-employment is forecast to rise by 300 jobs or about 15 percent to average 2,290 in 2027.
The Columbia Basin is one of two sub-areas, along with the Eastern Six, that make up Eastern Oregon. In addition to Morrow and Umatilla counties, Eastern Oregon includes Baker, Grant, Harney, Malheur, Union, and Wallowa counties. Eastern Oregon is projected to add 7,700 jobs through 2027, rising to 86,100, an increase of 10 percent. The Eastern Six sub-area is expected to add 2,840 jobs over the 10-year forecast, rising to 41,800 jobs, an increase of 7 percent.
In addition to Eastern Oregon, industry employment forecasts are available for seven more areas in Oregon – along with sub-area breakouts for the East Cascades (Central, Columbia Gorge and South Central) and Eastern Oregon. The Portland Tri-County (Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington counties) and the East Cascades led the forecast with each area rising by 13 percent from 2017 to 2027. Job growth is expected to be considerably slower for the five counties of Northwest Oregon (Benton, Clatsop, Columbia, Lincoln, and Tillamook), rising by 7 percent over the 10-year forecast. Slow growth is also expected for the three counties that make up Southwest Oregon (Coos, Curry, and Douglas).

 


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