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Sen. Gillibrand calls for business forum in upstate New York

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ALBANY — U.S. Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand, D-N.Y., wants the federal government to host a “Made in Rural America” export forum in upstate New York.

Gillibrand is a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee and the President’s Export Council. She says the initiative would help strengthen rural exports by helping small and mid-size rural businesses overcome obstacles to reach markets overseas.

Last year, the state produced an estimated $84 billion in overseas business. Gillibrand says one of the best ways to spur more growth is helping small businesses take part in the global marketplace. She says a forum in central New York could highlight everything being done in the rural upstate area.

Nearly 17 percent of New York’s exports already go north to Canada.

Last month Gillibrand and Rep. William L. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, hosted a small business export round-table in Ogdensburg. The focus of that event was to highlight trade support services available through the U.S. Export-Import Bank.

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