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Oil and gas opportunities growing in the Valley

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YOUNGSTOWN, OHio - Oil and gas exploration continues to present opportunities for business growth in the Mahoning Valley.

A new report reflects the impact the industry is having in the region, and it's just getting started.

The annual Valley Economic Update shows 118 projects involving economic development agencies, with investments totaling more than $400 million and 7,000 jobs created or retained, with oil and gas playing a significant role.

Sarah Boyarko, the Regional Chambers vice president for economic development, says Exterran is one example of a business indulging in the recent oil and gas projects with $13 million.

Others include Hilcorp and NiSource at $300 million and Chesapeake $900 million.

The Youngstown-Warren area is positioned in the heart of the Utica location, and is a gateway to Marcellus Shale.

Boyarko says more projects are already in the works.

"There's other ribbon cuttings pending for this year that are exciting news in the Valley," she says.

Vince Bevacqua of ShakeComm says more wells will mean more pipelines, processing plants and supply chain investments; so we're not even scratching the surface.

The Chamber and Bevacqua both say that shale development is going to be a game changer for the Valley.

"It is the opportunity we've been waiting for a couple of generations now to really latch on to and make a big difference economically in this area," says Bevacqua.


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