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Puerto Rico Manufacturing Declines

June 6, 1985

WASHINGTON (AP) _ The number of manufacturing firms in Puerto Rico, and the workers they employ, declined slightly over five years, the Census Bureau reported Thursday.

There were 2,285 manufacturing establishments on the island as of 1982, according to the newly publshed Economic Censuses of Outlying Areas. Those firms employed 143,218 workers and had a payroll of $1.5 billion, the study said.

That was down from 2,297 establishments employing 146,861 counted in the 1977 economic census. Payroll had been $996 million in 1977.

Manufacturing employment in Puerto Rico peaked in the 1972 census, the report said, at 149,748 workers at 2,340 establishments.

The 1982 study said the 2,285 manufacturing establishments in Puerto Rico were run by 362 proprietors, and in addition to the paid employees there were 117 persons listed as unpaid family workers.

The cost of materials used by the manufacturing firms was $7.2 billion and goods shipped were valued at $15.9 billion.

The largest source of jobs was the apparel and textile industry, where 341 establishments employed 31,764 workers, the study said.

In addition, electric equipment production provided 21,682 jobs; other major sources of employment included food products, 18,621; chemicals, 17,225; and instruments and related products, 10,865.

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