Obama Urges Entrepreneurial Focus on America

'If we make America the best place to do business, businesses should make their mark in America,' Obama said. 'They should set up shop here, and hire our workers, and pay decent wages, and invest in the future of this nation,' stressed the president. 'Tha

President Barack Obama on Feb. 5 urged American entrepreneurs to focus on the needs on America and "make their mark."

"If we make America the best place to do business, businesses should make their mark in America," Obama said in his weekly radio address. "They should set up shop here, and hire our workers, and pay decent wages, and invest in the future of this nation," stressed the president. "That's their obligation.

Obama is scheduled to address the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Feb. 7 in what analysts see as a bid to smooth over their contentious relations of the past.

Last year, the chamber opposed Obama's health care reform, his drive to change Wall Street practices as well as other legislative initiatives. The group also gave millions of dollars in campaign donations to Republican candidates. The White House publicly responded by publicly accusing the chamber of funneling money from overseas to U.S. political candidates.

Obama said that in his speech he would stress that government and businesses have mutual responsibilities and that if they fulfill these obligations together, all Americans would benefit.

"Our workers will succeed. Our nation will prosper. And America will win the future in this century just like we did in the last," he predicted.

The address was one of a series of speeches given by the president recently that were aimed at promoting business in the country. It came after government statistics made public on Feb. 4 appeared to show the jobs market was heading in the right direction, but at the wrong velocity. The private sector added 50,000 jobs, offsetting the loss of 14,000 payrolls in the federal and state governments.

Jobs were added in manufacturing, a key engine of the recovery from recession, up 49,000, and in retail trade.

Sectors typically affected by inclement weather such as construction shed 32,000 jobs.

Most other major industries saw little change in employment over the month, the Labor Department said.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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