State’s Economic Development Agency Joins OPIC Partners Program

The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED) announced today that it has joined the Overseas Private Investment Corporation’s (OPIC) Partners Program. Located in Washington, D.C., OPIC is the U.S. Government’s development finance institution supporting private sector investment to help solve critical development challenges in emerging markets. As a participant in the program, DBED will be able to connect Maryland businesses with OPIC’s resources, which includes assisting businesses that want to gain a foothold in emerging markets around the globe.

“In today’s competitive economy, businesses of all sizes need to think about innovative ways to tap into new opportunities for growth. Making the move to expand internationally can be that much easier with the expert advice that OPIC offers,” said DBED Secretary Dominick Murray. “We are pleased to bring this important resource to Maryland businesses as we continue to help them explore new global markets for trade and investment.”

Because OPIC works with the U.S. private sector, it helps U.S. businesses gain footholds in emerging markets, catalyzing revenues, jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. The OPIC Partners Program is dedicated to expanding the Agency’s role by working with key organizations throughout the U.S. to create a greater understanding of OPIC’s programs and activities. The Maryland DBED is the 19th member to join the program.

“Helping U.S. businesses expand into overseas markets is the cornerstone of OPIC’s mission,” said Dr. Lawrence Spinelli, OPIC’s Director of Outreach and Public Affairs. “Our support produces development impact abroad, but another positive effect of our work is providing benefit to American small and medium-sized businesses. This partnership with DBED links OPIC to the important base of Maryland entrepreneurs. I’m looking forward to the results of the collaboration.”

Maryland has been focused on boosting the State’s exports and helping companies take advantage of global trade opportunities. In 2010, Governor Martin O’Malley launched the Maryland Export Initiative to compliment President Obama’s National Export Initiative. Maryland was awarded a total of $1.2 million in grants from the U.S. Small Business Administration to increase the number and amount of Export MD grants, a State program that provides funding to small and mid-sized businesses to help them market their products and services overseas. For more information on the Export MD program, click here.

Through its Office of International Investment and Trade, DBED also works to stimulate foreign direct investment in the State, welcomes foreign delegations and coordinates international trade and investment missions and trade show opportunities for Maryland companies.

Established as an agency of the U.S. Government in 1971, OPIC operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to American taxpayers. OPIC services are available for new and expanding business enterprises in more than 150 countries worldwide. To date, OPIC has supported more than $200 billion of investment in over 4,000 projects, generated an estimated $76 billion in U.S. exports and supported more than 278,000 American jobs.

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