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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $801,824 to Support Startups and Small Businesses in Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $801,824 grant to the Centro Unido De Detallistas De Puerto Rico in San Juan to help provide comprehensive technical assistance to the small and medium sized businesses which are still coping with the effects of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. According to grantee estimates, the project is expected to create 60 new jobs.

“After last year’s devastating storms, organizations like Centro Unido De Detallistas De Puerto Rico are essential elements in the recovery, providing the assistance small businesses need to rebound,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This project will help make Puerto Rico more competitive and provide a boon to economic growth efforts on the island.”

Key economic support activities from this investment include business development, access to capital, assistance with exporting, and educational events focused on disaster planning.

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 (
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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