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President Obama Wants CNY to Increase Exports

By Ryan Morden


Syracuse, NY – The U.S. Department of Commerce wants manufacturers in Central New York to increase exports abroad. That's part of President Barack Obama's goal to double exports in the next five years.

One of the ways the president is helping meet those export goals is by sending commerce department officials all over the country to spread the gospel of what the department can do to help small and mid-size manufacturers.

Rick Wade works with the Secretary of Commerce.He says most consumers in the world are outside of the United States, so there's enormous potential to send things abroad and diversify customer bases.

"Only %1 of American firms, American companies export. Of that %1, %56 only exports to one country," said Wade, Deputy Chief of Staff to Commerce Secretary Gary Locke.

One reason businesses don't venture into international markets is fear of the unknown.

"If a company wants to export, but has never done it before, we have trade specialists who can help them analyze where the best opportunities to export are in the word," said Wade. "We have foreign commercial services officers, one of the best kept secrets in our government, who are in these countries to advocate for them. "

One of things those agents can do is help a company deal with foreign banks that don't have a presence in the U.S.

That's a service Anne Seneca of Alpha Boats Unlimited uses. Her company is located in Weedsport and makes water maintenance equipment.

"The more we export, the more we need to work together with the commercial services, the foreign commercial services located in each country," said Seneca.

Rick Wade says if business owners are aware of the expertise available to them, they can take advantage of export opportunities.