Development Cooperator Program
Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) is a competitive matching
grants program that builds public/private partnerships by providing
Federal assistance to non-profit export multipliers such as states,
trade associations, chambers of commerce, world trade centers and
other non-profit industry groups that are particularly effective
in reaching small-and medium-size enterprises (SMEs). MDCP awards
help to underwrite the start up costs of new export marketing ventures
which these groups are often reluctant to undertake without Federal
Benefits and Accomplishments
partners generate hundreds of millions of dollars in exports.
During fiscal year 1999, award recipients
generated over $634 million in exports, much of which was by SMEs.
The MDCP has generated well over $2 billion in exports since its
inception in 1993.
MDCP spurs private sector investment in foreign market development.
When the projects funded to date are
completed, the private sector will have spent over $43 million to
develop foreign markets (vs. $17 million of Federal award dollars).
MDCP challenges the private-sector to think strategically about
Working together, the private and public
sectors bring their particular assets to bear to develop strategic
plans to win or retain market share. Rather than rely on a "shotgun"
approach to make market inroads, MDCP projects can focus all activities
deemed necessary to achieve success in one or more market/s within
one to three years.
In FY 1999, the 20 active MDCP award recipients organized, participated
in or sponsored 66 trade events including trade shows, trade missions,
reverse trade missions, seminars, conferences and catalog shows.
MDCP reaches SMEs with customized help they need.
Most barriers to exporting are internal to the SMEs themselves
and not externally imposed by foreign markets. The MDCP is designed
to help SMEs address these internal barriers. To be effective, export
assistance programs must be specific, intensive and customized to
the needs of individual industry sectors. MDCP selection criteria
encourage this approach.
Since the MDCP's inception in FY 1993, MDCP award recipients report
that thousands of SMEs have taken their initial or additional export
actions as a result of their participation in MDCP project activities.
The MDCP builds effective partnerships.
The program is premised on the concept that export assistance works
best when it is delivered locally by state agencies, quasi-public
providers, or non-profit industry organizations, with the Department
of Commerce playing an enabling role.
The Congress, early on, recognized the significance and versatility
of the MDCP to accomplish national policy objectives. In addition
to the program's enabling legislation, the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness
Act of 1988, which cited the MDCP as a unique way to "develop, maintain
and expand foreign markets for nonagricultural U.S. goods and services,"
Congress included the MDCP in the Jobs Through Exports Act of 1992
to generate new jobs, in the Freedom Support Act of 1992 to help
provide technical assistance to the Newly Independent States (NIS)
of the former Soviet Union, in the Jobs Through Trade Expansion
Act of 1994 to promote the export of products complying with U.S.
environmental and safety requirements, in the U.S. -Japan Export
Development and Technological Competitiveness Act of 1994 to increase
the number of U.S. manufacturing and service sector industry associations
operating in Japan, and in the Small Business Export Enhancement
Act of 1995 to increase the number of small businesses participating
in export expansion activities.