Farooq Mitha, who leads the Department of Defense’s Office of Small Business Programs, has detailed DOD efforts to mitigate the declining number of small businesses in the defense marketplace as the said suppliers are considered as an essential part of the industrial base.
In a commentary piece Business Insider published Tuesday, Mitha wrote that small businesses are hampered by “bureaucratic red-tape” that prevented them from pursuing opportunities in federal government contracting.
“If this decline continues at the current pace, our nation is at risk of losing key domestic capabilities,” he warned.
Mitha said the Biden administration seeks to address this challenge by issuing executive orders to boost the equity of federal procurement.
He added that DOD has also provided a resource for small businesses looking to know about how to do business with the department and which programs are available to them.
Small businesses have been contributing to national security in addition to the U.S. economy.
Technologies made under DOD’s small business awards have made breakthroughs relevant to everyday life, such as the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency-funded research on mRNA therapeutics, which has resulted in technology present in Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.
Notably, DOD awarded more than $80 billion to small businesses in 2020.