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Fact Sheet: How the Department of Commerce Supports Manufacturing

At the Department of Commerce, we support manufacturers in a number of ways:

The National Institute of Standards and Technology's Manufacturing Extension Partnership works with small and mid-sized U.S. manufacturers to help them create and retain jobs, increase profits, and save time and money. The nationwide network provides a variety of services, from innovation strategies to process improvements to green manufacturing. MEP also works with partners at the state and federal levels on programs that put manufacturers in position to develop new customers, expand into new markets and create new products.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology's Advanced Manufacturing Partnership National Program Office has information on key issues for the manufacturers industry, such as economic growth policies, data supporting trends in manufacturing, innovation training, as well as other resources available from the government that help to improve the business climate for U.S. manufacturing. Advanced Manufacturing Research supports manufacturers across the country.

Manufacturers looking to export to new markets have a willing partner in the International Trade Administration. Manufacturers can learn to export, access key market research on foreign buyers, or find financing.

The International Trade Administration's Manufacturing and Services unit is dedicated to enhancing the export competitiveness of U.S. industry, expanding its market access, and increasing its exports. Manufacturers can access strategic research and analysis in order to develop specific strategies for increasing their exports and learn more about trade agreements.

The Minority Business Development Agency helps minority-owned manufacturers secure capital for new equipment and facilities; compete for pubic and private sector contracts; and prepare for exporting opportunities through a network of 45 MBDA Business Centers around the country, including ones located in manufacturing enclaves such Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, El Paso, Houston and Seattle. 

Manufacturers with a new product or process can obtain a patent or trademark with the United State Patent and Trademark Office.

Manufacturers looking to comply with export control laws should visit the Bureau of Industry and Security.

Those looking for manufacturing statistics should visit the Bureau of Economic Analysis. All four of BEA’s economic program areas are involved in production of the manufacturing statistics: national, international, industry, and regional accounts.

The US Census Bureau has the Manufacturing Statistics Program and the Economic Census Program. The manufacturing statistics programs measure the overall performance of the U.S. manufacturing sector and the investment behavior of all U.S. businesses important to the overall health of our nation’s economy. The 2012 Economic Census’s detailed industry and product statistics furnish an important part of the framework for five-year benchmarks to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ (BEA’s) Input-Output Accounts, which recalibrate the National Income and Product Accounts and ensure the accuracy of the principal composite measure of U.S. economic performance, the GDP.