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News and Announcements


  • Submitted on 25 September 2012

    Agricultural, Energy, Transportation, and Mining Technologies

    The purpose of this trade mission is to deepen trade ties with South Africa and to explore export opportunities to Zambia. Apply Now, Space is LimitedThe Commerce Department will help U.S. firms find customers and business partners in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa, and Ndola, and Lusaka, Zambia.

    Why South Africa and Zambia?

    South Africa is the most advanced, broad-based industry and productive economy in Africa. South Africa became the newest country to join the leading emerging market group, BRICS. In 2011, U.S. - South Africa trade increased 18% percent from its 2009 trade level.

    Zambia is gerographically well placed to become a regional hub as it shares it border with eight countries. Zambia was recently ranked one of the fastest growing economies in the world by The Economist Magazine. Zambia is emerging into a focus with a U.S.-Zambia trade increase of 83 percent in 2011 over its 2011 level.

    Which Sectors?

    • Electric Power and Energy Efficiency Technologies

    • Productivity Enhancing Agriculture Technologies and Equipment

    • Transportation Equipment and Intrastructure

    • Mining Equipment and Technology

  • Submitted on 19 September 2012

    The U.S. Small Business Administration and theU.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) are teaming together on a pilot program in eight states to broaden the impact of the agency’s programs among Hispanic entrepreneurs. 

    “An economy built to last includes boosting entrepreneurship opportunities in Hispanic American communities,” said SBA Administrator Karen Mills.  “The SBA is having a powerful impact in this sector, with a billion dollars in loans to Hispanic-owned businesses last year alone.  The pilot program we are announcing today will help us do better. 

  • Submitted on 31 August 2012

    Desert PlainThe U.S. Commerce Department today announced two national webinars to gather input and comment on a proposed policy, “Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy for the U.S. Department of Commerce,” establishing how Commerce consults with federally-recognized Indian tribes on policies that have tribal implications. These consultations promote Commerce’s mission by supporting strong and stable tribal economies able to participate in today’s national and global marketplace.

    The purpose of the policy is to reaffirm Commerce’s commitment to formalize a process that ensures accountable, meaningful and timely input from tribal officials in the development of Commerce policies that have tribal implications. The proposed policy was developed through numerous Commerce listening sessions with Tribes.

    As part of continued outreach efforts with Tribes, Commerce is conducting webinars to discuss the policy and gather input and comments from tribal leaders. The two webinars are scheduled on Wednesday, September 12 and Wednesday, September 19 from 3:00-4:00 pm EDT.

  • Submitted on 13 July 2012

    The U.S. Commerce Department today announced it is accepting public comments on a proposed policy, “Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy for the U.S. Department of Commerce,” establishing how Commerce consults with federally-recognized Indian tribes on policies that have tribal implications. These consultations promote Commerce’s mission in part by supporting strong and stable tribal economies able to participate in today’s national and global marketplace. The proposed policy responds to President Obama’s 2009 White House Memorandum and the 2000 Executive Order 13175 by reaffirming the unique government-to-government relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribal governments.

    “The Obama administration recognizes the government to government relationship with American Indians and Alaska Natives and is committed to ensuring these individuals remain an integral part of policy-making decisions,” said Commerce Senior Advisor on Native American Affairs, Dee Alexander. “This policy further codifies Commerce’s efforts to support job creation and economic stability in Indian country so that American Indians and Alaska Natives have the tools they need to grow and compete globally.”

  • Submitted on 13 July 2012

    The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has joined with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Defense (DoD) to launch a training program for transitioning service members and veterans to help them become entrepreneurs and create jobs.  Operation Boots to Business: From Service to Startup is a national initiative that will be piloted with the U.S. Marine Corps. The announcement was made today by U.S. Small Business Administrator Karen Mills and U.S. Marine Corps representatives at Quantico, VA. 

  • Submitted on 30 May 2012

    Comment Submission Period is Closed.

    The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) publishes this notice regarding the petition received on January 11, 2012 from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) requesting formal designation of Arab-Americans as a minority group that is socially or economically disadvantaged pursuant to 15 CFR Part 1400.

  • Submitted on 29 May 2012

    The Obama Administration today announced a $26 million multi-agency Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge to foster innovation-fueled job creation through public-private partnerships. These coordinated investments will help catalyze and leverage private capital, build an entrepreneurial ecosystem, and promote cluster-based development in regions across the United States. This is the third round of the Jobs Accelerator competition, which is being funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) and National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST); the U.S. Department of Energy; the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration; the Small Business Administration; and the National Science Foundation (NSF).

    “This $26 million Accelerator Challenge is yet another example of the Obama Administration’s commitment to supporting American manufacturers in building things here and selling them everywhere,” said U.S. Commerce Secretary John Bryson. “We are so pleased to join with our federal agency partners to further strengthen the American manufacturing sector, which creates high quality, good paying jobs. Commerce’s Economic Development Administration has a strong record of investing in regional innovation clusters that foster the job creation and business development crucial to an economy that is built to last. This Challenge further bolsters our efforts and builds on the momentum we have seen in the manufacturing sector in recent months, including the 489,000 U.S. manufacturing jobs that have been added since January 2010.”

    Advanced manufacturing is critical to the health of the national economy and provides essential goods and equipment directly to consumers as well as to a wide range of industries, including the energy production, agriculture, medical and computing industries, and the security and intelligence sectors.

  • Submitted on 29 May 2012

    $26 Million Multi-Agency Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge

    The Obama Administration announces a $26 million Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, a partnership between the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration and National Institute of Standards and Technology, the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, the Small Business Administration, and the National Science Foundation. This initiative will assist the development and implementation of regionally-driven economic development strategies that support advanced manufacturing and cluster development. In addition to the six partnering agencies, the initiative will leverage technical assistance from up to eight other Federal agencies.

  • Submitted on 15 May 2012

    The federal government issued on May 9 a solicitation for proposals from teams led by non-profit organizations or universities to establish an Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, which would serve as a pilot—or proof-of-concept prototype—for President Obama's proposed National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI).

  • Submitted on 08 May 2012

    Immigrants make a significant contribution to business ownership and formation, according to a new study from the Office of Advocacy. Immigrant Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners, and their Access to Financial Capital found that 10 percent of immigrants own a business. Nearly 20 percent of immigrant-owned businesses started with $50,000 or more in startup capital, compared to 15.9 percent for non-immigrant-owned business. The study uses data from the 2007 U.S. Survey of Business Owners and the 1996-2010 Current Population Survey.

    “Immigrant entrepreneurs are essential to our nation’s growth and economic prosperity,” said Chief Counsel for Advocacy Winslow Sargeant. “Immigrant entrepreneurs make our nation more competitive and serve as reminders of the American dream.”

    The most common source of startup capital for immigrant-owned businesses is personal or family savings, with roughly two-thirds of businesses reporting this source of startup capital. Other commonly reported sources of startup capital by immigrant-owned businesses are credit cards, bank loans, personal or family assets, and home equity loans. Overall, the sources of startup capital used by immigrant-owned businesses do not differ substantially from those used by non-immigrant-owned firms.

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MBDA Minority Business Centers helped clients obtain capital totaling $4.76 billion during the last 5 fiscal years.
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