Business Climate
North Louisiana's business climate continues to improve as the state reforms it regulations, tax structure and ethics codes to make it easier for companies to operate in our state.

North Louisiana's Business Climate Climbs the National Rankings 

North Louisiana and the state consistently climb the national rankings for best business climate.  For the past four years, no state has improved more than Louisiana.


  • Louisiana ranks #1 in costs for new Capital & Labor Intensive Manufacturing Operations (KPMG Location Matters, 2015)
  • Louisiana ranks #1 for costs for new R&D Facilities (KPMG Location Matters, 2015)
  • gave Louisiana a grade of A on small business friendliness, ranking the state No. 4 in the U.S. for its supportive small business environment (August 2015) 
  • Site Selection magazine ranks Louisiana No. 7 in the U.S. (November 2011)
  • Business Facilities has ranked Louisiana No. 2 in the U.S. (August 2011) 
  • Area Development magazine ranked Louisiana No. 6 nationally.  (September 2011)
  • Forbes ranked Louisiana No. 30, jumping 14 places from a year ago. (November 2011)
  • Pollina Corporate Real Estate Inc. ranked Louisiana  No. 18, up 22 spots since 2008 (August 2011)
  • Chief Executive magazine ranked Louisiana No. 27th, moving up 14 places from 2010. (May 2011) 


  • North Louisiana ranks as the no.1 most cost competitive with a Business Index of 91.3. (KPMG Competitive Alternatives) 
  • IBM in Monroe, LA and Monster Moto in Ruston, LA named CiCi Award Recipients for Community Impact (Trade & Industry Development, March 2016)
  • Bossier Parish Wins a National Award for Promoting a Knowledge Economy (2016 Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties)
  • City of Monroe wins Community Achievement Award for Economic Development among large cities (Louisiana Municipal Association)
  • City of Ruston wins Community Achievement Award for Economic Development for 10,001 to 25,000 population size. (Louisiana Municipal Association)


  • Shreveport Ranks in the Top Ten of Most Millennial Friendly Cities (Bloomberg Business)
  • Monroe Ranks No. 12 among "Best Cities for Women Entrepreneurs" (
  • West Monroe Ranks 19th among the “Best Cities for Young Families in LA” (NerdWallet)
  • Bossier City Ranks 22nd among the “Best Cities for Young Families in LA” (NerdWallet) 
  • Ruston and Bastrop were tied for No. 74 as Top Micropolitans (Site Selection )
  • Natchitoches Named Best Southern Small Town (USA Today Readers Choice Poll)
  • Shreveport recognized as the number one place to build a new business (WalletHub)
  • North Louisiana has three of the top 100 best bass fishing lakes in the country, including No. 1 Toledo Bend. Lake Bistineau (No. 27), the Red River (77) and the Atchafayala Basin (98).
  • Monroe ranks among the 50 best college towns to live in forever (College Ranker, March 2015)
  • IntegriCo Composites recognized as the CiCi Award Recipient for Community Impact (Trade & Industry Development)


  • Shreveport Bossier ranks in the top 25 Cities on the Rise in LA (
  • Natchitoches Ranks as No. 7 “City on the Rise in LA” (
  • Bossier City ranks No. 9 as "Best Cities for Single Mothers" (
  • Shreveport Bossier recognized as the 3rd Happiest City in America (Harvard University Study, 2014)
  • Three of the Most Affordable Hospitals in LA are in North Louisiana
  1. Willis-Knighton Health System
  2. LSU Health- Shreveport
  3. Natchitoches Regional Medical Center
  • Monroe ranks in the top 20 Happiest Cities in America (Harvard University Study, 2014)
  • Shreveport ranked No. 18 of the ``Best Cities to Start a Business'' list. (, March 2014)
  • Bossier City named No. 7 for “Best Places to Find a New Job” – Money magazine
  • Shreveport-Bossier ranked among the “Best Opportunity Cities” – Forbes magazine
  • Monroe-West Monroe ranked No. 4 among the "Cities on the Rise in LA," because of population growth, employment growth and income growth. -, consumer advocacy website
  • Shreveport-Bossier named  a “Game Changing Community” because of its economic potential- Southern Business & Development (SB&D), an economic development journal
  • Shreveport was ranked No. 3 on the top five small cities to live, work and make movies in (Movie Maker Magazine)

North Louisiana: Lowest Cost of Business 

Our region offers the lowest cost of doing business in the nation and in North America, as ranked by Forbes magazine (2011) and KPMG Competitive Alternatives (2010).  North Louisiana's cost competitive tax structure, utility rates, transportation and labor costs offer businesses a sustainable solution for competing nationally and globally.  

A Business-Friendly Tax Environment

Louisiana encourages business development by eliminating several taxes and creating a more business-friendly tax structure. 
  • Louisiana’s low-tax environment offers new business operations significant cost savings. According to a 50-state analysis by the Tax Foundation and KPMG: Location Matters (2015), Louisiana ranks as the second-lowest tax burden for new business operations.
  • In 2008, Louisiana ranked No. 6 for states with the lowest tax burden (Anderson Economic Group's State Business Tax Burden State Rankings)
  • Louisiana also ranked No. 6 on business taxes to state profits 
  • Louisiana ranked No. 2 on business taxes to private GSP 
  • Taxes consumed only 12.2 percent of Louisiana business profits, compared to the national average of 16.7 percent


  • Sales tax on manufacturing machinery and equipment
  • Sales tax on natural gas and business utilities
  • Capital gains tax on the sale of privately held businesses
  • Phase out of the franchise tax on corporate debt by 2011
  • Minimum corporate franchise tax
Louisiana also deducts federal income tax from state corporate income tax. These pro-growth policies have strengthened Louisiana’s tax environment, making it a more competitive place to invest and develop a business.  The state has also recently implemented the largest personal income tax cut in state history, putting more money back into the pockets of Louisiana’s taxpayers.

State, Regional & Local Incentives Reduce Tax Liability

Businesses in Louisiana have access to a competitive, comprehensive portfolio of state, federal and local incentives that can make a profound impact on a company’s bottom line. Incentives, such as Enterprise Zone, Quality Jobs, Research & Development Tax Credit, Industrial Tax Exemption and Louisiana FastStart™ are available to help companies compete and succeed. 
NLEP can provide advocacy and assistance with applying with statutory incentive programs. We can also assist companies with requesting for discretionary state, regional or local incentives. Please contact our business development team for more information. (Qualifying for many of the incentive programs depends on job creation and capital investment.)

Good Deals for Manufacturers

Louisiana’s use of single-factor sales apportionment to calculate manufacturers’ corporate income taxes.  This provides a significant cost advantage, because manufacturers are not taxed on earnings generated by sales to out-of-state entities. This is not the case in the majority of other states. As of July 1, 2009, electricity, water, natural gas, machinery and equipment used by manufacturers are exempt from Louisiana sales tax.  

Inventory Tax Advantage 

In Louisiana, when a business files its state income and franchise tax, it can simply claim the amount it paid to local authorities for inventory taxes as a refundable credit. If the inventory taxes paid to the local authorities exceed the company’s state income and franchise tax liabilities, the company gets the balance as a refund. 
Combined with the state’s strong logistics and infrastructure, comprehensive workforce development network, innovative industry developments, and low cost of doing business, North Louisiana is the place for business investment.

Expedited Permitting

To maximize time and efficiency for companies, the state has created an expedited environmental permit-processing program, which enables Louisiana to issue permits more quickly and efficiently than most states in the country.

Contact NLEP

North Louisiana Economic Partnership 
Regions Tower 
333 Texas Street, Suite 411 
Shreveport, LA 71101 
1900 North 18th Street, Suite 501 
Monroe, LA 71201