Point: Secretary Bryson on Making it Easier to Do Business in America

Jan 13, 2012

NOTE: John Bryson is Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Read the response from John Murphy, the Vice President of International Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Today, the President announced his plan to ask Congress for the authority to reorganize and consolidate the government so we can provide more effective, efficient services to the American people.  He wants this authority, which Presidents had until it lapsed in 1984, so that we can modernize our structure to better compete in the global economy and maximize services for the American people.  And the first priority would be to strengthen the ways that American businesses – large and small – can work with the government to compete, export, and grow.

There is not a federal agency that can't be better or smarter in accomplishing its mission.  That's why this consolidation authority is so critical.  Many of the structures in place right now are outmoded and outdated. 

More specifically, today the President also announced that he would use such authority to organize all of the business and trade related functions into a new department, including many functions of the Commerce Department.

Currently, there are six major departments and agencies that focus primarily on business and trade in the federal government, including: U.S. Department of Commerce’s core business and trade functions, the Small Business Administration, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Export-Import Bank, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the Trade and Development Agency.

Consolidating these agencies will create one new Department with one mission: to spur job creation and expand the U.S. economy.

As a former CEO, I fully support this approach and know the considerable merits to having all of the economic functions in one department.

This move would be of enormous benefit to U.S. businesses of all sizes.  We will have more resources and less red tape.  There will be fewer hurdles in our way to provide faster services and answers to businesses.  We will be able to partner more effectively with entrepreneurs and business leaders to best support American competitiveness and innovation, create jobs, and encourage sustainable, long-term economic growth

As I said while speaking before the US Chamber of Commerce last month, as Secretary of Commerce I will prioritize one simple imperative – to help American businesses build it here and sell it everywhere so that we can create more good paying jobs here at home.  It is my firm belief that the President’s proposal will enable the entire federal government, to better support businesses to do just that.

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