More exports urged from Md. businesses Mosbacher says exports can beat domestic slump.

November 15, 1991|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,Evening Sun Staff

U.S. Commerce Secretary Robert A. Mosbacher, in Baltimore on the 28th stop in a 30-city road show, said Maryland businesses must be prepared to export their goods and services in the global market.

Mosbacher and representatives of five other federal agencies have been traveling around the country telling small- and medium-sized businesses about programs that are available to help them export their products. They say the global market will offer a way for American companies to maintain or increase sales despite a slump in the domestic economy.

Yesterday Mosbacher told about 200 Maryland business representatives that the state is especially well-positioned to use the Port of Baltimore to assist in exporting its goods.

Maryland exports in 1990 were valued at $3.22 billion, up from $1.44 billion in 1985.

Despite concerns that American business will export jobs as well as products, Mosbacher said the Bush administration is proceeding with negotiations on a free trade agreement with Mexico.

Closer economic ties with Mexico undoubtedly will mean the loss of some manufacturing jobs, but Mosbacher said the free trade agreement in the long run would make American businesses more competitive and save jobs that might otherwise have gone to Asia.

Although the North American Free Trade Agreement is controversial, he said, he did not believe the president should wait until after the 1992 election to submit the plan to Congress.

Meanwhile, Mosbacher said, the administration is continuing its efforts to break down trade barriers with Japan. "We've had moderate success in getting the Japanese to open their markets," he said.

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