The Maine International Trade Center has received a national honor for its work in expanding exports.

Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker on Monday presented MITC with the President’s “E” Award for Export Service at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., according to a news release from the department. The President’s “E” Award is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.

“The ‘E’ Awards Committee was very impressed with the Maine International Trade Center’s dedication to helping companies understand the intricacies of the export process,” Pritzker said in her congratulatory letter to the organization. “The Maine International Trade Center’s achievements have undoubtedly contributed to national export expansion efforts that support the U.S. economy and create American jobs.”

MITC provides education and counseling services for companies interested in exporting their products, and coordinates trade missions for state officials. It operates under the Maine Department of Economic & Community Development and works with more than 300 internationally active businesses, individuals and educational institutions in Maine.

The organization will celebrate its 20th anniversary at Trade Day 2016 in Portland on May 26.

Criteria for the “E” award are based on four years of successive export growth and case studies, which demonstrate valuable support to exporters resulting in increased exports for the company’s clients, according to the release.

Pritzker recognized 123 companies with “E” awards, a recognition started in 1961 when President John F. Kennedy signed an executive order reviving the World War II “E” symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America’s exporters.

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