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Testimony by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo at the Senate Commerce Committee FY 2023 Budget Hearing


Chair Cantwell, Ranking Member Wicker, and members of the Committee, thank you for this opportunity to discuss President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Request for the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The priorities funded in this Budget build upon the investments you enacted in Fiscal Year 2022, and I am grateful for your support as we look forward to accomplishing even more in Fiscal Year 2023.

The Budget Request includes $11.7 billion for the Department, an 18 percent increase above the fiscal year 2022 enacted level.

At Commerce, we have one overarching goal: to improve America’s competitiveness so that our workers and companies succeed in the global economy.

I’d like to focus on six key areas of investment.

First, the Budget strengthens the nation’s supply chains by investing in domestic manufacturing.

It calls for $275 million for the NIST’s Manufacturing Extension Program and $97 million for Manufacturing USA to strengthen domestic supply chains and help small and medium-sized manufacturers improve their competitiveness.

The Budget also proposes $16.1 million to augment the Commerce Department’s data tools and expertise to support more secure and diversified supply chains.

Second, the Budget positions us to compete globally, protect our national security, and continue to lead a global coalition united in condemnation of Russian aggression against Ukraine.

It calls for $630.8 million for ITA to enhance commercial diplomacy and export promotion. 

It also provides BIS $199.5 million to apply and enforce export controls and strengthen efforts to counter new threats from Russia and China.

Third, the Budget invests in equitable and inclusive economic growth for all Americans.

America's diversity is our greatest strength and our greatest competitive advantage.

The Budget provides $502.5 million for the EDA to help communities experiencing economic distress take control of their future and position themselves for economic prosperity and resiliency.

It also proposes $110 million for the MBDA to meet the full authorization that was included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Part of this funding will be used to open new regional offices and establish a Rural Business Center program.

Fourth, the Budget takes historic action to combat the climate crisis.

It includes $6.9 billion for the NOAA to continue providing the data, strategies, and expertise necessary to address the climate crisis.

This request also supports programs to catalyze wind energy, restore habitats, protect the oceans and coasts, and improve NOAA’s ability to predict extreme weather associated with climate change.

Additionally, the Budget proposes $87.7 million for the Office of Space Commerce. This significant increase in funding will be dedicated to standing up a civil, operational Space Situational Awareness capability at NOAA. 

Fifth, the Budget expands opportunity and discovery through data.

Timely data is crucial to supporting American competitiveness, innovation, and growth of quality jobs.

The Budget provides the Census Bureau with $1.5 billion to continue its transformation to a 21st-century data-centric model. It also calls for $141 million for the Bureau of Economic Analysis to support new data on the supply chain, income distribution statistics, health care spending, and growth of the space economy.

Sixth, the Budget ensures the Department can provide 21st-century service to the American public.

It proposes new funds to enhance cybersecurity and increase the diversity and equity of our workforce.

Before I close, I also want to thank you for your work to advance the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act.

My team and I are committed to working with you to reach agreement on a strong, bipartisan bill that spurs domestic semiconductor manufacturing, makes transformational commitments to research and development, and helps counter competition from China.

The Commerce Department has key priorities in the bill, many of which are this Committee’s priorities as well, including tech hubs, supply chain authorities, and CHIPS funding.

There is an urgency to act. Other countries are not slowing down.  Existing fabs are operating at 90% capacity while demand is running 17% above pre-pandemic levels.

Chip manufacturers have made clear that they are going to build more facilities. The question is whether they build those facilities in the US, or in other countries that have already been able to offer them incentives.  Completing this conference quickly will give manufacturers the certainty they need to bring good-paying manufacturing jobs back to the US and help unleash the next generation of innovation. I look forward to working with you to enact both USICA and the President’s FY 2023 Budget for the Commerce Department, and I am happy to take your questions.