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Fri May 10, 2019, 05:28 AM

Sablan: Bill helps Marianas small businesses

CNMI Del. Gregorio Sablan introduced legislation Tuesday to give small businesses in the Mariana Islands access to two grant programs and a microloan program run by the federal Small Business Administration, his office announced. The Marianas is the only U.S. jurisdiction not included in these programs.

"There are 1,700 small businesses in the Marianas, employing 18,000 people," Sablan said. "Especially now, with the Marianas economy struggling, we need to find more ways to help those existing businesses develop and grow and keep people working."

He added, "And we need to encourage new businesses to spring up."

The bill would make about $600,000 available to establish a Lead Small Business Development Center, according to the congressman. The renewable funding would be used to expand the reach and capacity of the existing development center on Saipan. Small businesses on Saipan, Tinian and Rota would get better access to free or low-cost services, such as incubator workspaces for entrepreneurs. Assistance would be available with loan applications, business planning, operations, personnel administration, marketing, export assistance, sales and other contributors to small business growth and success.

Read more: https://www.postguam.com/news/cnmi/sablan-bill-helps-marianas-small-businesses/article_9e5ed8d2-7227-11e9-a291-d31ea70950f9.html

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