BALTIMORE (WJZ) —   In August, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency awarded $2 million to the Mayor’s Office of Small, Minority and Women Business to operate the Mid-Atlantic Region Minority Business Development Agency Advanced Manufacturing Center.

The project will provide targeted assistance to minority manufacturers and increase the number of “Made in America” products produced in Baltimore. It’s designed to help identify, screen, promote, and refer minority business enterprises to advanced manufacturing programs.

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“In line with my administration’s goal to advance equity and empower our minority– and women-owned businesses, the development of minority manufacturing and advanced manufacturing processes and procedures in our city will improve employment opportunities for our residents and increase the net worth of Baltimore’s community-based businesses. Small businesses create jobs and promote economic growth in our Black and Brown communities, which have not historically received investment,” said Mayor Brandon Scott.

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This is the fourth MBDA grant award for the City of Baltimore and the second award focused on minority manufacturing.

“We are grateful for the continued support and confidence the Minority Business Development Agency has provided our program. We look forward to continuing our efforts to grow minority manufacturers in the Mid-Atlantic Region,” said N. Scott Phillips, Esq., Director of the Baltimore MBDA Advanced Manufacturing Center.

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One new initiative for the center is the Manufacturing Innovation HUB Cooperative. The cooperative will provide shared resources and opportunities for its members. The new round of funding will be distributed over the course of the next five years.

CBS Baltimore Staff