State Resources

West Virginia Business Resources

Despite West Virginia’s mountainous terrain, agriculture made up the majority of the West Virginian economy until the twentieth century. Later, the abundance of resources such as coal, oil, natural gas, and hardwood forests fueled an industrial expansion that shifted the economy’s focus from agriculture to the extraction of natural resources. The first and second world wars triggered a boom in the manufacturing industry, which then became the dominant industry.

West Virginia’s principal manufactures today are steel, chemicals and glass. The state’s coal industry ranks second among all states and contributes 15% of the country’s total coal production. The service industry has been growing recently, though not to the extent of many other states. Within the service sector, tourism is strong featuring dozens of state parks and national forests state. However, manufacturing and mining are still the pillars of the state’s economy.

Business Data

Per Capita Real GDP$24,748 Rank: 49/50 (2006)
Population1,808,340 Rank: 37/50 (2000)
Per Capita Personal Income$27,897 Rank: 49/50 (2006)
Unemployment Rate4.40% Rank: 23/50 (2008)
Business Tax Climate IndexRank: 37/50 (2008)
Corporate Tax Rate8.5%
Individual Tax Rate 3% - 6.5%
Sales Tax Rate 6%

Business Tax Climate Index

Individual Income Tax Index Rank
Sales Tax Index Rank
Unemployment Insurance Tax Index Rank
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Business Tax Climate Index
Corporate Tax Index Rank

State Information

Nick NameMountain State
State Web Site
MottoMountaineers are always free

Top 5 Export Partner Countries

Canada, Belgium, Japan, China, Brazil

Top 5 Export Merchandise

Primary Metals Sales Chemicals Sales Computers and Electronic Products Manufacturing Primary Metals Manufacturing Machinery Manufacturing

Major Cities

Charleston, Huntington


Total Gross Domestic Product (USD Millions) $57,711.00 (2007)
Per Capita Real GDP (USD)$24,929.00 Rank: 50 (2007)

Population Stats

Population 1,814,468 Rank: 37 (2008)

Age Distribution

Under 18 Population402,393
Under 18 Percent of Total Population22%
65 and older Population276,895
65 and older Percent of Total Population15%

Gender Distribution

Male Population48.6%
Female Population51.4%
Non-English Speaker (at home)38,639
Net International Immigration3,691
Birth Rate11.5%
Percent of People Under Poverty Level18%


Per Capita State Spending$18,920
Energy Expenditures per Person$4,315
Expenditures of State and Local Government Employee-Retirement Systems$628,719


Personal Income$36,483
State Internal Revenue Collection$6,521,950
Cash and Deposits by State Government$17,105
Per Capita State Tax Collection$2,522


High School Graduation Rate72.7%
Percent of Population with a Bachelor's Degree10.2%
Percent of Population with an Advanced Degree6.6%

Largest Universities

West Virginia University Fairmont State University Marshall University
High School Graduation Rate72.7%


Public Road Length (Mile)37,054 (2005)
Gas Tax Rate (%)31.5%
Highway Planning and Construction (USD Thousands)355,794
Number of Public Airports35

Main Airports




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State Business Links

The Charleston Gazette

Secretary of State

West Virginia Secretary of State
Office responsible for corporate registration, business regulation, and supervision of elections.

Small Business Administration

West Virginia Small Business Administration
SBA's West Virginia District Office is located downtown Clarksburg, an area of industry and growing small businesses. Clarksburg is a unique community rich with economic growth, heritage, and family recreation. In 1877, Clarksburg narrowly missed becoming the capital of West Virginia.

Top 10 Business Links

Bureau of Business & Economic Research (BBER)
Part of the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics, the BBER is a research oriented center aimed at aiding both state and regional businesses. Its website hosts a wealth of information, from research publications to economic forecasts and public finance. Publications can be accessed online for free, or ordered for a fee.
Business for West Virginia
An online portal for business services in West Virginia, aims to aid both local and out-of-state companies who wish to establish themselves in the state. Services offered include financial aid, business filings, and several publications for start-ups.
US Export Assistance Center for West Virginia
This branch of the Department of Commerce specializes in helping small to medium sized companies, in West Virginia, develop and execute exporting strategies. Fees vary and are based on the service being provided.
West Virginia Chamber of Commerce
Represented largely by small businesses, the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce is a general business organization, representing the interests of SMBs in the state. It offers a range of services, including advocacy, and research on state policy and legislation. The website also contains a variety of resources and links for business assistance.
West Virginia Development Office (WVDO)
The office is dedicated to promoting West Virginia as an attractive business destination, for both international and national companies. It contains a library of state data, including demographics, natural resources, and technological assets. The site also provides a listing of available business sites, as well as various aids for international firms.
West Virginia High Technology Consortium (WVHTC) Foundation
The WVHTC Foundation is a non-profit organization that aims to foster the growth of a state and nation-wide high-tech business sector. It primarily offers support and guidance for firms initially venturing into the sector. Other services include workforce education, partnership opportunities, and support for international expansion. is a resource site for West Virginia businesses, who wish to expand into international markets through exporting. It offers export assistance, and numerous links to other sources of information and assistance for global expansion.