President Obama’s 2010 plan to double export levels by 2015 prioritizes exports from small businesses, and he tasked the Small Business Administration and five other agencies with promoting exports from small businesses.
In a report to the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, the Government Accountability Office
found the SBA’s coordination with the Commerce Department and the U.S. Export-Import Bank can be improved and suggested greater communication among the three agencies.
To achieve the stated goal, the SBA is primarily responsible for outreach, export financing, counseling and training.
The GAO also found the SBA needs to establish clearly defined roles with the two other agencies and increase information sharing. Some of the agencies’ initiatives overlap, which is inefficient and may cause confusion. Defined roles and responsibilities will eliminate these redundancies.
In addition, the SBA must update its plan for meeting staffing requirements set out by the 2010 National Export Initiative.
The GAO noted the SBA is currently working on these goals. - Jon Ross