2011 National Export Strategy Released

On June 28, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, on behalf of the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee (TPCC), released to Congress the 2011 National Export Strategy: Powering the National Export Initiative (NEI). The TPCC—an interagency body compromised of 20 federal agencies—annual report focuses on methods of implementing 70 recommendations made in a Sept. 2010 report to President Barack Obama on the NEI. The NEI was announced by President Obama in Jan. 2010, and calls for the doubling of U.S. exports by 2015 and creating two million new American jobs.

The TPCC report reinforces the importance of U.S. exports of goods and services, which in 2010 totaled $1.84 trillion, an increase of nearly 17 percent over 2009 levels, and supported more than 9 million jobs in the U.S.

Starting with this report, the annual National Export Strategy will fill the essential role of tracking and measuring the federal government’s progress in implementing the NEI. The TPCC will assess new opportunities and seek new ways for its agencies to improve coordination and increase effectiveness. The report identifies several areas of focus for federal agencies in their export-promotion efforts during 2011, including:

  • Improved collaboration with states, metropolitan areas, and border communities to help U.S. companies successfully export around the globe;
  • Support of exports by U.S. companies selling technologies in high-growth sectors, partly through improving the U.S. supply-chain infrastructure;
  • Ensuring better data and measurement of U.S. services sector exporting; and
  • Removing barriers to trade, including through passage of the pending South Korea, Colombia and Panama trade agreements.

> Other sections examined the progress that is being made by federal agencies in addressing eight priorities identified in Executive Order 13534, which launched the NEI, and metrics for analyzing the success of export promotion strategies. Two appendices offer a detailed matrix of the status of the 2010 NEI recommendations and a report on export promotion activities by state.

Additionally, Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Chair of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship commented on the TPCC release of the 2011 National Export Strategy. She stated “I am pleased to see that the promotion of export opportunities for our small business continues to be a top priority for the Administration, as evidenced by the progress outlined in the 2011 strategy. However, there is still much work to be done and if we are to achieve the President’s ambitious goal of doubling U.S. exports and creating two million new American jobs, it is critical that the Administration move forward with other complementary initiatives aimed at increasing small business exporting opportunities, including the full implementation of the exporting provisions enacted by the Small Business Jobs Act.”

Sen. Landrieu also sent a letter to the Small Business Administration (SBA) regarding the Agency’s progress in implementing a key provision from the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010. Section 1203 of the legislation directed the SBA to appoint an Associate Administrator to head the Office of International Trade and coordinate the agency’s export promotion activities. In the letter, Senator Landrieu highlighted the importance of filling this position in light of the significant number of pending Administration initiatives aimed at increasing export opportunities for small businesses, including the NEI.

The TPCC was established by the Export Enhancement Act of 1992 to coordinate the export promotion and financing programs of the U.S. government, as well as to develop a comprehensive plan for implementing government-wide strategic priorities. The release of this year’s export strategy marks the first time all 18 trade agencies have agreed upon common metrics to measure export promotion.