Smaller Scale Regional EDOs

Smaller regional EDOs (and some smaller states) generally do not have the scale, funding, or expertise to effectively provide their own export promotion services, and as a result tend to rely on federal and state partners. Furthermore, interviews suggested that attempts by regional EDOs (even some larger ones) to implement export promotion programs have been challenging  because of a lack of expertise in trade and the tendency to prioritize business attraction activities. Consequently, interviews and research suggest that the primary role for smaller regional EDOs (or those with limited resources) should be the following:

Potential Activities

  • Connecting exporters and potential exporters with existing federal and state export promotion programs, which includes building strong relationships with regional companies and initiating discussion about international opportunities and needs. (This role reinforces the importance of strong BRE and aftercare programs that engage regional companies and foreign enterprises.)
  • Creating awareness about global opportunities and the programs available to support companies (often through educational and awareness events).
  • Providing grants or scholarships for companies in the region to take advantage of federal and state programs (see Grants and Incentives).

See full IERC Final Report for citations, p. 56-57.


The primary role for smaller EDOs in export promotion is to connect exporters with existing federal and state programs.


See the page on identifying exporters and companies with export potential in your region.