USTR Ron Kirk and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke Tour FedEx Global Export Operations in Memphis


This week, Ambassador Ron Kirk and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke are visiting the front lines of global trade in Memphis, Tennessee. That’s where Ambassador Kirk and Secretary Locke got a behind-the-scenes look at the FedEx global operations hub, one of the busiest transportation and logistics centers in the world. They toured the site at midnight to get a sense of how FedEx operates around the clock, sending over eight million packages daily to more than 220 countries. That enormous volume of trade activity supports 230,000 FedEx jobs in the United States, including 30,000 in the Volunteer State.

Their trip is part of the Obama Administration’s ongoing outreach efforts to listen and learn from American workers, farmers, and firms both small and large who are benefiting from trade.


Also today, Ambassador Kirk and Secretary Locke attended a town hall with Memphis-area small businesses that benefit from increased export opportunities. Local small business owners shared their export success stories in industries ranging from medical devices to heating and lighting equipment.

Ambassador Kirk discussed how USTR is working to open new markets and make it cheaper, faster, and easier for small businesses to export. Secretary Locke highlighted how small business owners can get started exporting by visiting the one-stop shop online at

Both Ambassador Kirk and Secretary Locke are emphasizing how small businesses are a crucial part of the President’s National Export Initiative, which aims to double exports over the next five years in support of two million additional jobs.