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Uploaded on Jan 3, 2012
Anna Gomez, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and Deputy Administrator, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) introduces the Out Connect section of the COMPETES website (www.commerce.gov/competes)
Providing and maintaining infrastructure is one of government's most important roles, and perhaps one of the most underappreciated. Infrastructure improves the lives of individuals every day, providing electricity and water, the roads and public transportation needed for commuting and shopping, and telecommunications network. Businesses rely on much of that same infrastructure and firms cannot compete if they lack efficient ways for inputs, including information and new innovations, to reach manufacturing plants or places of business. Nor can they compete if they don't have an efficient way to reach consumers, whether in the same town or across the world and whether their products are food, cars or the latest new online "app." In short, "infrastructure—freight ports, airports, bridges, roads, rail and transit networks, water and sewer systems, web of channel communications—is the connective tissue of our nation" and it "has a dramatic effect on the economic competitiveness of our nation, the health of our environment and our quality of life."