Bush says Gulf Coast ripe for small biz
President says he's upbeat about the future economy of the region, but worried about meeting demand for labor.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - President Bush said Friday that the Gulf Coast region was a "great opportunity" for small businesses even though the rebuilding process may pose some hurdles.
"I believe that out of this terrible harm and grief is going to come a vibrant economy," Bush told a meeting of the National Newspaper Association in Washington.
President Bush, who touched on everything from the No Child Left Behind Act to Al Qaida during a question and answer session, said he believed that the federal aid earmarked for the region would help businesses recover.
On Tuesday, the White House said the federal government has committed some $88 billion to help rebuild the Gulf Coast and a $20 billion supplemental funding bill for the region is currently before Congress.
President Bush said he also anticipated potential problems for businesses in the region.
"One is going to be labor," Bush said, addressing a possible inability of businesses to satisfy their demand for workers.
"If you're interested in making a living, go down there and there'll be a job," he said.
Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Gulf coast on August 29, killing over 1,300 people.
Retailers say they are still committed to the Gulf region -- click here.