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Last updateSun, 20 Oct 2019 8pm







    Sunday, October 20, 2019-5:38:17A.M.






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Deadline to apply for small business export assistance is June 30

(Office of the Governor) — Gov. Ralph DLG. Torres and Lt. Gov. Arnold I. Palacios, through the CNMI Department of Commerce, announced on Thursday that the deadline to apply for assistance under the CNMI State Trade and Expansion Program or STEP is June 30, 2019 for Grant Award Year 2018.

The STEP program is funded in part through a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration to provide financial assistance to qualified small businesses new to exporting as well as current export-ready small businesses in the CNMI.

The STEP program is designed to help increase the number of small businesses that would like to further their business growth through international exporting both for new-to-export businesses and market-expansion businesses. The end goal is to increase both business growth and job creation through international trade.

“The STEP program is an essential federal program that provides our small businesses here in the CNMI with the tools they need to succeed within a more globalized economy. I commend the CNMI Department of Commerce for being proactive in helping us expand our product reach to not only our historical markets, but also the rest of the world,” said Gov. Ralph DLG Torres

“The CNMI economy is dependent on a delicate balance of imports and exports. As our tourism industry continues to recover, the CNMI STEP program would continue to strengthen our export activities and diversify our economic drivers,” said Secretary of Commerce Mark O. Rabauliman.

The Department of Commerce, in collaboration and partnership with the Commonwealth Development Authority, urges all interested new-to-export as well as export-ready small businesses in the CNMI to take the opportunity to submit an application before the deadline. Application forms may be downloaded via the following link:

For more information about the CNMI STEP program, call Frank Cabrera, CNMI STEP project coordinator at 664-3077, David Maratita, CNMI STEP compliance coordinator at 488-1006, or e-mail