The Commerce Department and e-payment system PayPal are planning to collaborate on making economic data more accessible.
The two are forming a working group under Commerce's Data Advisory Council to encourage U.S. exports, the department's Chief Data Officer Ian Kalin wrote in a blog post, co-authored by Vadim Kutsyy, PayPal's senior director of data strategy and stewardship, and Harshal Deo, PayPal's vice president of data technology.
The advisory council aims to advise Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and other federal leaders on making commerce data easier to find and combine with other data.
“One of the classic questions that hinders American businesses is where to start exporting or how to expand existing exports," they wrote --- for instance, an automotive parts manufacturer might wonder whether to export to East Asia or to Eastern Europe.
Opportunities for the working group include helping "provid[e] business owners with targeted benchmarks and opportunity assessments," they wrote. The group will be co-chaired by Kutsyy and Kalin but is open to volunteers, according to the blog post.
In initial data experiments, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis has used Census Bureau's country and product trade data to create international transaction reports, which could in turn be used to create international investment statistics reports, among other data products.
But in the working group's early stages, "it is not clear what the final product resulting out of the working group with PayPal and the U.S. Department of Commerce will look like," the team wrote in a blog post, though its "guiding mission" is "to create a public and freely accessible platform that can help small and medium-sized businesses increase their overseas exports."
(Image via www.BillionPhotos.com/ Shutterstock.com)