Guam Leaders Turn to Hawaii for Help with Business Growth - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Guam Leaders Turn to Hawaii for Help with Business Growth

Michael Cruz Michael Cruz

By Paul Drewes

HONOLULU (KHNL) - The population of Guam is going to explode as the United States realigns its military bases.

So leaders of Guam are here in Hawaii asking for help in handling the increase in people and business.

While Hawaii has seen a spectacular amount of growth over the past few years, just wait, says the Lt. Governor of Guam, til the military moves nearly forty thousand marines, troops and their families to the West Pacific island.

"That will raise our population by 25 percent," says Michael Cruz, Guam's Lt. Governor.

To give you an idea of just how huge the increase will be for Guam, the island territory has a population about half of Honolulu's. Now imagine adding in the entire population of Aiea, Ewa Beach and Waianae combined, all in just a few years.

Along with the population explosion, there will be a huge need for businesses that support this growth, businesses that could come from Hawaii.

"Anywhere from construction, to service industries, to finance, you can imagine all the different things that people need to live," adds Cruz.

"Hawaii has many retailers, businesses not yet in Guam, you need coffee shops, you need bookstores," says Steve Sombrero, a Honolulu Business Expert.

Guam's government is also turning to Hawaii yo see how this military growth can be effectively managed. "There is a large military presence here, we've watched as your co-existance with private community and military has been a balance," states Cruz.

And some believe the bottom line of our island companies could also see a big boost by Guam's growing population.

"For many Hawaii businesses this is an opportunity to move their resources to an island economy that is about to break in a big way," says Sombrero.

Coming up later this month, there will be an industry forum held on Guam. Where the military will announce upcoming projects, like roadwork and on-base construction, which have been already approved for the upcoming realignment.

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