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September 16, 2010 

President's Export Council to Meet Today/Export Promotion Cabinet Releases Plan to Double Exports

The President's Export Council (PEC) will meet at 9:30 a.m. today in Washington to discuss topics related to the National Export Initiative (NEI). President Obama is scheduled to deliver remarks to PEC at 9:45 a.m. The meeting will be shown via live webcast on the White House's website.

In advance of today's PEC meeting, this morning the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee (TPCC) issued a report to the President that presents the Export Promotion Cabinet’s recommendations for doubling exports in five years. This report will be followed by the National Export Strategy which will detail the implementation of these recommendations and measure progress.

The TPCC consists of the Export Promotion Cabinet, which includes the Secretaries of Commerce, State, Treasury, Agriculture and Labor and the heads of all the trade-related government agencies.
In preparing the report, the TPCC Secretariat reviewed over 175 responses to a Federal Register notice requesting input to the National Export Initiative from small, medium, and large businesses; trade associations; academia; labor unions; and state and local governments.

The report notes that the administration’s efforts, through the NEI, are focused on five areas including: access to credit, especially for small and midsize firms; more trade advocacy and export promotion efforts; removing barriers to the sale of U.S. goods and services abroad; enforcement of trade rules; and pursuing policies that will increase global economic growth so that there’s a strong worldwide market for U.S. goods and services.

The report outlines ways the U.S. government can expand efforts to help U.S. businesses win more foreign government contracts, find buyers worldwide, participate in more trade missions and trade shows, receive more export financing, and learn new ways to sell products and services overseas. A central focus of the plan is providing additional assistance to small and medium-sized businesses.

Part I of the report, titled “The NEI in Context,” sets out eleven key factors and assumptions that form the basis of a plan to double exports, ranging from assessments of the U.S. and global economies and identification of priority markets, to determining the most promising and appropriate roles for the Federal Government in increasing exports.

Part II of the report, titled “Recommendations,” examines each of the eight NEI Priorities, describes the rationale underlying each Priority, and presents short- and long-term recommendations for the Federal Government to implement, consistent with the Executive Order that mandated the Report.

Finally, Part III presents conclusions, discusses the National Export Strategy that will be published later this year, and highlights suggestions for further advancing the NEI goals.

Key recommendations in the report include:

  • Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs): a National Outreach Campaign led by the SBA and other Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee (TPCC) agencies to raise awareness of export opportunities and government export assistance for U.S. small and midsize companies; a re-launch of, the Government’s export internet portal, with new export training opportunities to help companies learn how they can begin selling their products overseas or break into new markets if they’re already exporting.
  • Federal Export Assistance: bring more international buyers to U.S. trade shows and encourage more U.S. companies to participate in major international trade shows. For the first time, implement a government-wide export promotion strategy for six newly designated “next tier” markets (Colombia, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey and Vietnam).
  • Trade Missions: substantially increase the number of trade missions abroad, particularly those led by senior U.S. Government officials, and foreign buyer trade missions to the United States.
  • Commercial Advocacy: level the playing field for companies bidding on projects abroad through improved coordination among government export promotion programs; formalize a path to escalate, for the first time ever, critical advocacy projects for direct White House and National Economic Council involvement where necessary.
  • Increasing Export Credit: extend more export credit through existing trade finance agencies, increase awareness of credit products, focus on SMEs and companies from underserved sectors of the U.S. economy, expand the eligibility criteria for SME export finance lending, and streamline the application and review process for SME exporters.
The report notes that the Administration’s plans for export control reform are completely separate from the National Export Initiative, but that a by-product of this important reform process will allow for exporters in some of the most competitive industries to export products consistent with the new export control process.

The entire Report to the President on the National Export Initiative: The Export Promotion Cabinet’s Plan for Doubling U.S. Exports in Five Years can be found here.

Update: The text of the President's remarks made at the opening of today's President's Export Council meeting can be found here.




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