State Trade Expansion Program (STEP)
By: Wyoming Business Council
Wyoming may be the nation’s least-populated state but its export sales potential is boundless. According to Weiser reports, Wyoming’s export sales rank 50th, ahead of only the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The WBC intends to aggressively use the STEP program to help eligible small business concerns (ESBCs) significantly grow the state’s export sales
The WBC is the state of Wyoming’s economic development agency and in that capacity coordinates international exporting and marketing opportunities. The STEP program complements the WBC’s recently created Think Global strategy, which calls for increased investment in Wyoming from around the world along with increased international trade. Targets include doubling foreign direct investment in Wyoming and increasing Wyoming exports by 50 percent.
Think Global action items include:
- Coordinating and developing foreign trade efforts.
- Increasing national and international awareness of Wyoming.
- Creating an inventory of Wyoming businesses with international reach.
- Assisting business and industry with accessing national and international markets.
- Export financing
The Think Global strategy will only enhance export sales progress made thus far, as the WBC works to help diversify and add value to Wyoming’s energy-driven economy during a time of falling commodities prices. Wyoming international trade grew 19.4 percent from 2010-15, according to the International Trade Administration. Overall, Wyoming manufacturing output increased 20 percent during 2010-14 (including all types of manufacturing from heavy industrial to tech), according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The number of Wyoming tech-based businesses climbed 13.2 percent from 2010-14. In 2015, the Kauffman Foundation ranked Wyoming No. 2 among best states for startups.