International trade is a critical component for the long-term growth and viability of small businesses and the U.S. economy overall. In 2016, total U.S. exports reached $2.2 trillion, which is nearly 12 percent of the United States Gross Domestic Product. Those exports helped support over 11 million jobs.
Exporting provides small businesses with the opportunity to reach new markets, increase revenue, grow their business, and ultimately create needed jobs. Increasing small business exports continues to be a top priority for both United States lawmakers and the federal government. While nearly 300,000 small businesses are currently exporting to foreign markets, many small businesses face significant challenges in getting their goods and services abroad because they do not have the knowledge, resources, or capital to navigate the trade process; therefore, they simply do not export.
The Committee remains focused on leveraging existing federal, state, and local resources to increase American exports. Through greater coordination of federal agencies, strengthening partnerships between key players in the trade process, and more effectively providing tools and information to small businesses, the Committee aims to encourage more small businesses to participate in the global marketplace. Additionally, the Committee works directly with the Administration to ensure that small business growth is given the attention it deserves as America strengthens and enforces existing trade deals and negotiates new ones.
The benefits of exporting are clear. The Committee is focused on opening new markets, ensuring fair trade, and making the overall trade process easier for small businesses. With the United States’ economy struggling to recover, Congress should be doing everything within its power to create an environment for small businesses to prosper, expand, and create jobs.