Empowering New York’s Asian American Community Since 1989

Restarting New York’s Economic Engine: Tapping the Strength of Asian Businesses



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Asian-owned businesses have long been the New York metropolitan area’s economic engine, accounting for 20 percent of all businesses before the pandemic. Between 2012 and 2017, Asian-owned businesses with employees were thriving:

  • generated nearly $121 billion in economic activity in 2017, a 35 percent increase from 2012
  • provided jobs to more than 555,000 people in 2017

Meanwhile, Asian-owned non-employer businesses, i.e. businesses without paid employees:

  • increased by 31 percent between 2012 and 2017 outpacing all other major racial groups
  • 78 percent of all Asian-owned businesses were non-employer businesses in 2017

The pandemic however hit Asian businesses first and hardest. Nearly half of Asian businesses reported catastrophic losses. Despite this, only a small number of these Asian businesses received assistance from the government or institutions tasked with helping them.

AAF’s latest report:

  • Quantifies the economic contributions Asian-owned businesses have made to the New York metro area
  • Outlines the outsize impact of the Covid-19 crisis on Asian-owned businesses
  • Describes the unique challenges that Asian-owned businesses face
  • Recommends policy changes that will help Asian-owned businesses grow and prosper

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