Although industrial employment in Maine fell 1.4 percent in the past year, this drop is lower than the previous year's decline of 1.8 percent, according to the 2013 Maine Manufacturers Register, an industrial directory published annually by Manufacturers' News Inc. in Evanston, Ill.    Based on this new figure, Maine now accounts for 2,198 manufacturing employers with 65,716 workers, MNI finds.    "Manufacturers in Maine have yet to fully recover from the recession, and uncertainty surrounding defense contracts due to looming spending cuts has affected hiring," says Tom Dubin, president of MNI. "However, the state's low business costs, educated work force and abundant natural resources continue to be a draw for new business."   Transportation equipment ranks as Maine's largest sector by employment with 9,568 jobs, marking nearly no change from the last year, MNI finds. Next is paper products with 7,191 jobs, down 3.9 percent, followed by food products with 6,995 jobs, a 3.7 percent drop. Of the sectors with gains are instruments and related products at 7.6 percent, textiles and apparel at 1.9 percent, and industrial equipment at 1.5 percent.   Among the sectors with losses are electronics at minus 6.4 percent; lumber and wood at minus 4.9 percent; chemicals at minus 4.9 percent; printing and publishing at minus 4.3 percent; stone, clay and glass at minus 3.5 percent; primary metals at minus 2.9 percent; and rubber and plastics at minus 2.5 percent, MNI reveals.   The directory also finds that Portland is Maine's top city for employment with 152 manufacturing companies and 5,143 workers, which is virtually the same from last year. Bath comes in at the No. 2 spot with 5,080 jobs, also for no significant change, while third-ranked Westbrook accounts for 3,306 jobs, up 8.2 percent. Auburn follows with 3,126 jobs, down 2.7 percent, with Lewiston supporting 2,279 jobs, a decline of 4.4 percent.

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