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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.6 Million to Support Business Growth in Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.6 million grant to the Puerto Rico Trade and Export Company of San Juan, Puerto Rico. This grant will be used to establish an entrepreneurial program that will deliver technical assistance and support through centers located in San Juan, Ponce, and Mayagüez, further helping these communities recover after last year’s devastating hurricane season. According to grantee estimates, the project is expected to help create 30 new businesses and 90 new jobs.

“The Trump Administration stands shoulder to shoulder with the countless communities which were ravaged by hurricanes last year,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “The funding announced today will help support the rebirth of local businesses throughout Puerto Rico.”

“This allocation of funds by the EDA, from the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 we worked on in Congress, is undoubtedly a great boost to our economy, especially after the devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria,” said Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico, Jennifer González-Colón. “I thank Secretary Ross and the Trump administration for their continued attention to Puerto Rico's plight. Puerto Rico's economic health is of great importance for the United States, and I have always bet on private enterprise as the main engine of economic development.”

Through the three centers, entrepreneurs and existing small and medium-sized businesses will be provided with co-working space, access to shared services, business training and technical assistance, as well as support in the development and commercialization of new products and services.

This project is funded under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (PL 115-123) (PDF), in which Congress appropriated to EDA $600 million in additional Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program (PDF) funds for disaster relief and recovery as a result of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, wildfires and other calendar year 2017 natural disasters under the Stafford Act.

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.

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