Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.5 million grant to the American Samoa Shipyard Services Authority, to support the acquisition of equipment, machinery, and tools needed to modernize the Shipyard Service Facility located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
“The Trump Administration is committed to helping communities impacted by natural disasters modernize their infrastructure to support economic growth and resiliency,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.
“This project located in an Opportunity Zone will provide the American Samoa Shipyard Service Authority with the necessary resources to modernize the Shipyard Service Facility to keep our great Pacific fishing fleets operating continuously and profitably for years to come.”
Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development said, “Tropical Cyclone Gita caused widespread damage to American Samoa in 2018.
“This project will help American Samoa become more economically resilient in the event of future natural disasters and the project’s location in an Opportunity Zone will help drive additional private investment to the territory.”
“Improving shipyard equipment and keeping up facilities helps American Samoa put our exceptional natural harbor to best use,” said Representative Aumua Amata.
“Thank you again to Secretary Ross and Assistant Secretary Gartzke for recognizing this need, and supporting our opportunity zone just as Congress intended to benefit the local economy. Congratulations to Shipyard Chairman HC Liu Siakisone Liu.”
The funding announced today goes to one of American Samoa’s 16 Opportunity Zones. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development in economically-distressed communities nationwide.
In June 2019, EDA added Opportunity Zones as an Investment Priority, which increases the number of catalytic Opportunity Zone-related projects that EDA can fund to fuel greater public investment in these areas.