The Association for Advancing Automation (A3) was awarded $299,241 for the 2023 Market Development Cooperator Program (MDCP) grant, announced U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. Along with Medical Alley in Minnesota, which was awarded $147,348, A3 will receive the grant for projects aimed to boost U.S. exports and support jobs across the country.
A3 will utilize the MDCP award to support U.S. robotics and automation firms in expanding their exports of equipment and services to Mexico and India.
Partnering with a team from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration (ITA) based both in the target markets and the United States, A3 will connect U.S. companies with prospective partners and buyers of robotics and automation products and services in Mexico and India. The association plans to organize trade missions and provide export training to help U.S. automation companies navigate international markets and increase their global presence.
“We believe that A3 can play a key role in helping companies in Mexico and India take advantage of innovative automation products and services from U.S. companies,” said Burnstein. “We are very grateful for the trust placed in us by the Department of Commerce as we move forward with our efforts.”
The MDCP program awards cooperative agreements that establish partnerships between ITA and non-profit industry groups through which ITA provides technical and financial assistance up to $300,000 for three-to-five-year export-development projects that address trade barriers, enhance U.S. industry competitiveness, and sustain U.S. jobs.
“I am thrilled to congratulate the Association for Advancing Automation and Medical Alley on their innovative projects to help increase U.S. job creation and enhance economic prosperity through exports,” said Secretary Raimondo. “For more than 30 years, the U.S. Department of Commerce has issued MDCP awards that help U.S. firms across industries elevate their global competitiveness by working to eliminate barriers to trade and expanding export opportunities to more small- and medium-sized businesses across the United States.”
Through these awards, the recipients will be able to leverage ITA’s global network of more than 2,000 experts in more than 80 international markets to pursue sustainable projects that will help strengthen the U.S. economy and workforce. Each federal dollar awarded yields, on average, $286 in U.S. exports making MDCP the most successful federal export cooperative agreement program.
“The success of this grant is measured by the reported increase in exports from the U.S. companies who participate in our international pavilions and trade events,” explained Burnstein. “A3’s goal is to help foster increased adoption of automation. We will teach courses on how to safeguard robot systems, what you need to know to become a certified vision professional and many other key topics that can help create a more skilled workforce.”
Mexico and India are just the first of many countries A3 plans to assist with automation, said Burnstein. “With more than 1,230 member companies from across the globe, A3 is the world’s largest robotics and automation trade group,” he explained. “We very much want to help users all over the world gain a better understanding of how to successfully apply automation.”