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A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce


Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests Nearly $1.2 Million to Promote Exports and Job Creation in North Carolina

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding nearly $1.2 million to Halifax County, North Carolina, to make critical infrastructure improvements that will help local wood manufacturers expand, create jobs, and increase exports. The investment will help create 50 jobs and generate $55 million in private investment for the region, according to grantee estimates.

“The Obama Administration and the Commerce Department are committed to helping U.S. businesses sell more of their goods and services to the 95 percent of consumers that live outside our borders,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The EDA investment announced today supports infrastructure improvements that will help Halifax County manufacturers increase production and exports.”

Halifax County is known as the “wood basket” because it has abundant forest resources, which has made wood manufacturing an important industry for the area. EDA’s investment will enable water and sewer improvements needed to support EcoFuels, LLC’s local wood pellet manufacturing facility as well as Klausner Lumber Two, an adjacent wood manufacturing facility. According to the grantee, EcoFuels exports its Halifax-made product as a clean alternative fuel source to major European power-producing utilities to fuel their industrial boilers, and these improvements will enable it to increase its exports and create jobs.

Total exports from North Carolina (PDF) helped contribute to the record-setting value of U.S. goods and services exports in 2013, which reached $2.3 trillion. Nationally, U.S. jobs supported by exports reached an estimated 11.3 million in 2013, up 1.6 million since 2009. A record setting $2.3 trillion in U.S. goods and services were exported in 2013, supporting 11.3 million U.S. jobs. In 2013, goods exports from the state of North Carolina supported an estimated 159,478 jobs.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.