U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke joined Governor and President of the National Association of Manufacturers  (NAM) John Engler and FedEx officials today at the Commerce Department to announce a new partnership that will help increase U.S. exports  and create jobs in America. NAM, the nation’s leading manufacturing association, is the first industry organization to launch the Department’s New Market Exporter Initiative (NMEI) , which will bolster President Obama’s National Export Initiative (NEI) by identifying NAM members and FedEx customers who already export and helping them expand to new international markets by connecting them with Commerce Department trade specialists.
Commerce, NAM and FedEx will work with businesses to identify key markets, build market-entry strategies and provide the guidance needed to take high-quality products and services from the U.S. to global markets – building their businesses, increasing American exports and supporting new jobs at home. Small- and medium-sized companies interested in expanding into new markets  will have access to the free resources and tools available through a nationwide network of international trade experts and global shipping specialists. Activities to build awareness will include outreach at trade shows, direct mail campaigns and online registration for resource support.
“We know that American businesses produce world-class goods and services,” Locke said . “What we can improve is connecting those businesses to the 95 percent of the world's consumers living outside our borders. This partnership with the National Association of Manufacturers will do just that – helping to link manufacturers, especially small- and medium-sized firms, with new markets abroad.”
Manufacturers play a key role in exports with two-thirds of all manufactured goods contributing to overall exports. In 2008, American exports accounted for nearly 7 percent of our total employment and one in three manufacturing jobs.