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Ambassador Kirk Encourages Michigan Businesses to Export

Michigan welcomed Ambassador Ron Kirk on Friday as he visited the cities of Detroit and Warren to talk about how U.S. trade policy can support well-paying jobs in Michigan. Read some of the news coverage of his visit.

From the Daily Tribune:

"The Obama administration's top trade official visited Warren Friday and heard a series of disturbing stories about difficulties encountered by small businesses trying to compete overseas with companies from China, India and Russia.

...

Kirk, a former Dallas mayor, said he is working with the Commerce Department to ease the path toward export deals for American firms, particularly small and medium-sized companies. The trade representative said that commerce officials, who have established a global presence, act as a "matchmaker" that pairs U.S. products with overseas customers.

Those American business owners who doubt the impact that free trade and exporting can have on their individual enterprises should realize that 95 percent of the world's consumers live outside of the United States.

In Michigan, exporting is a $50 billion a year industry and federal officials say that more than 500,000 Michigan workers owe their paycheck to international trade.

Kirk, who spoke at the Tech Center forum after delivering a speech to the Detroit Economic Club, said exporting is the fastest way for small companies, such as those with 10 employees, to double or triple their income and work force."

From Michigan Radio:

"U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk says the country needs to export "technology and innovation" to compete in the world economy.

Kirk spoke to small business owners and labor representatives in Warren Friday.

Kirk was joined by Governor Granholm and Congressman Sander Levin. He talked about the need to ramp up U.S. exports, and says small businesses will play a crucial in making that happen."