Category Archives: Uncategorized

Maine making mark in exports to China

The potential for Maine companies to do export to China is vast “and this will obviously continue to be a very major focus area for us,” said Wade Merritt, president of the Maine International Trade Center (MITC).

“Today is just a start of that, and we are looking forward to continuing the partnership and the work that we’ve been doing together,” he said in an interview with China Daily at Maine International Trade Day on May 18 in Rockport.

As Northern New England’s largest international business event, this year’s event was themed “Global Trade’s New Era: Accessing Asia”, because “Asia is a growing market for Maine businesses, especially in the seafood sector, but others are also looking east,” he explained.

Read full article on China Daily USA

Biddeford’s Fiber Materials seeks new workers as part of diversification, expansion

In this week’s Made In Maine, a manufacturing plant in Biddeford is seeking new workers as it looks to diversify and expand globally.

FMI’s diversity into new international markets caught the attention of the organization Maine International Trade Center which, just last week, named it innovator of the year.

Watch on WMTW

Maine governor supports more trade with China

Maine is eagerly looking forward to more investment, students and tourists from China, said Governor Paul LePage.

Paul LePage, a Republican elected governor in 2011, will complete his second term at the end of the year. He visited China on trade missions in 2012 and 2015.

“So many results have been achieved!” he told China Daily, singling out the access that Maine’s lobster producers now have to the Chinese market. LePage also expressed strong support for international trade in the interview at Maine International Trade Day on May 18 in Rockland.

As the largest international business event in Northern New England, this year’s event was themed “Global Trade’s New Era: Accessing Asia”, as Asia is a growing market for Maine business.

Another win was a big investment in the state’s paper industry – St. Croix Tissue in Baileyville got $120 million from International Grand Investment Corp, the US branch of a Chinese investment firm.

The money helped save the company and resulted in more than 80 new jobs at the mill and hundreds of jobs indirectly.

Read full article on China Daily USA

University of New England launches “The Institute for North Atlantic Studies”

The University of New England announced today it is launching a new program to train the next generation of leaders to develop research, industry and community partnerships to meet shared challenges and opportunities throughout the North Atlantic region.

UNE President James Herbert was joined by U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, and other stakeholders in announcing the launch of UNE NORTH: The Institute for North Atlantic Studies, which will be located at 1075 Forest Ave. near the university’s Portland campus.

“With a changing climate and myriad international interests in the region, the Arctic presents both great challenges and great potential for our collective future,” King said in news release. “That’s why it’s so important we teach the next generation of leaders about the High North, so we can foster cooperation among nations, protect the environment, defend our national security interests, and ensure economic development is responsible and sustainable. With the launch of UNE NORTH, we are harnessing the innovative potential of students and researchers in Maine and further establishing our state as leader in the Arctic region.”

Read full article on Mainebiz

Maine lobster industry fears retaliation if China seafood tariff is enacted

Maine lobster dealers are among a group of U.S. seafood exporters asking federal authorities to keep its industry out of the brewing U.S-China trade war, arguing that putting a tariff on Chinese seafood would likely result in painful retaliation against U.S. exports.

Such retaliation would hurt Alaskan fishermen and Maine lobstermen most, industry leaders say.

“Not only because China is a crucial current and future market for U.S. fish, but also because there is no ready substitute for the China market,” said John Connelly, president of the National Fisheries Institute, in testimony to the U.S. trade representative.

Connelly was one of a half-dozen seafood industry leaders to oppose a recent proposal from six shrimp-producing states to levy a tariff on Chinese shrimp imports. They claimed it was unfair to drag seafood into a trade battle that began over intellectual property rights.

Most importantly, they worry about the impact of retaliatory seafood tariffs, especially for lobster.

In 2017, U.S. lobster exports to China were worth more than $90.2 million and rising, Annie Tselikis, executive director of the Maine Lobster Dealers Association, said in written testimony. That’s 125 times bigger than it was just a decade earlier, she said.

Read full article on Portland Press Herald

Maine companies grow in Asia despite Trump trade uncertainty

As the United States and China began talks Thursday to resolve a huge trade imbalance and avert tariffs that would hurt both countries, the Maine International Trade Center prepared for its annual meeting Friday that will focus on accessing Asian markets.

The two economic superpowers are negotiating to cut the $375 billion trade imbalance — the difference between what the United States exports to China and what it imports — by $200 billion by having China buy more American agriculture, semiconductor and natural gas products.

Despite the discord, Maine companies are growing throughout Asia, with the region being the state’s second-largest export partner after Canada. Asian countries bought almost $800 million of Maine products in 2017, according to the MITC. Asia has become an important market for lobster, blueberries, wood pulp and semiconductors.

Read full article on BDN Maine

Governor says another Chinese company wants to invest in Maine

Governor Paul LePage said Friday company from China is talking about buying one of Maine’s pulp and paper mills.

The Governor told an international trade conference in Rockport he has met with the company –which he wouldn’t name– and while there are no commitments yet, said they are very interested in Maine. He said it would be one more example of how Maine is expanding international trade, especially with Asia. Canada is the state’s biggest export market, but Asia is second.

Watch on News Center Maine

Maine Schools Face Cutbacks As Number of International Students Declines

The number of young people in Maine has been declining for decades. The trend concerns many independent and private town academies in the state. Some have lost up to a quarter of their students over the last ten years.

To try to increase enrollment and revenue, those schools have tried recruiting students from other countries. However, increased competition and federal immigration policy are now making it far more difficult for schools to find students.

Listen/read full story on Maine Public

Six Maine products selected for innovation showcase

The results are in and 6 Maine companies have been selected for a showcase of Maine’s most innovative global products. Last year, Maine companies exported nearly $3 billion in goods to 176 countries. Today in Portland, five companies voted best in state, provided a special preview of their products at the downtown Courtyard Marriott. Winners included a multi-use tape-like substance capable of splinting a finger or hauling a boat, toxic-free dog toys, and innovative new food products.

Watch on WMTW