ATLANTA – Georgia has been named the nation’s best state for business for the fourth year in a row by Site Selection magazine.

The announcement came during a press conference held Wednesday morning by Gov. Nathan Deal and other state officials.

Site Selection magazine is an economic development trade publication.

Each November, Site Selection releases rankings for the top states in which to do business. Georgia has been ranked among the top 10 states in Site Selection’s business climate rankings throughout the last decade and has held the top spot for the last three years.

“In the last four years, many small businesses have expanded in Georgia and numerous international companies have established operations here, reflecting the foundation offered to job creators,” Deal said. “Georgia leads the way in providing companies with a low tax burden and a business-friendly climate. In return, there have been more than 575,000 private sector jobs created since 2011.”

Deal has made economic development a focus of his tenure as governor, vetoing several measures passed by recent General Assembly sessions that he deemed as damaging to the state’s business-friendly image. Earlier this year, the legislature passed a so-called religious liberty bill, which drew the ire of many major Hollywood, entertainment and sports-related businesses because of its perceived anti-gay bias.

Deal’s veto raised the ire of conservative, religious leaders in the state who have vowed to revisit the issue when the legislature convenes in January 2017.

“Georgia’s fourth consecutive top state business climate ranking is based on where corporate expansion projects are occurring and where investors say they want to commit their capital for the long term,” said Mark Arend, editor-in-chief of Site Selection. “Our readers say the state’s fiscal soundness, predictable economic and regulatory climate, workforce and transportation infrastructure are their main reasons for investing in Georgia.”