New Jersey Offers Assistance to Small Businesses Selling Goods and Services Internationally, as India Opens Doors to Their Involvement

Aspire_frontview_3.jpgBusinesses in New Jersey and New York have more opportunities now to do business internationally than, probably, at any other point in history. As massive amounts of commerce pass through the ports of New York and northern New Jersey, technology allows people to do business together almost anywhere in the world. New York has become one of the country’s centers of technological innovation, so businesses looking to get involved in global commerce are well-positioned in New York or New Jersey. New Jersey’s Department of State (DOS) has established programs to assist both domestic businesses that want to do business internationally and foreign companies that want to bring their goods or services here. Other nations have also reached out with possible opportunities for New Jersey businesses to go global.

The DOS’s Business Action Center (BAC) offers programs to support and assist New Jersey businesses. Its Office of International Business Development & Protocol (IBDP), launched in the summer of 2012, assists New Jersey companies with import and export regulations and helps them find international markets and business partners. Its outreach efforts focus on countries described as “New Jersey’s top investor nations,” including Canada, France, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom, as well as “countries where New Jersey enjoys rich relationships,” including India and Taiwan. The BAC expanded its call center in August 2012 to include Spanish-speaking representatives, reportedly in order to improve outreach to New Jersey’s Latino-owned businesses and to foster relations with businesses in Spanish-speaking countries like Mexico.

In September 2012, the BAC received funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration to create the New Jersey State Trade and Export Promotion (NJSTEP) program, which can provide stipends for qualifying businesses to participate in export-oriented training programs and trade shows. New Jersey small businesses may qualify if they are owned and operated by disadvantaged individuals, women, or veterans; if they are located in rural areas; or if they have recently begun doing business in the People’s Republic of China. Qualifying businesses must also be less than one year old and operating profitably when they receive NJSTEP benefits.

New developments in India may be creating opportunities for New Jersey businesses in a massive infrastructure investment plan. The IDBP has reportedly been meeting with Indian consular officials to discuss India’s recently-approved twelfth “Five-Year Plan.” The Indian government has managed the country’s economic growth in a series of such plans. The next one, approved by the government in October 2012, will last from 2013 to 2017 and will include a planned investment of $1 trillion, in U.S. currency, in India’s infrastructure.

The IDBP and the BAC may be able to assist New Jersey businesses in exploring opportunities in India in the coming year, although they caution that India still has serious corruption problems. The opportunities, according to the India-US World Affairs Institute, may include investment in areas like physical infrastructure, defense, and medical technology. The country is reportedly also planning major investment in cybersecurity infrastructure, which may be of interest for information technology entrepreneurs in New Jersey and New York.

The business attorneys at Samuel C. Berger, PC offer fixed-fee packages of legal services to businesses and entrepreneurs who want to do business in New York and northern New Jersey. To speak to a member of our skilled legal team, contact us today online or at (212) 380-8117.

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Photo credit: By Aspiremktg (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.