The Importance of Primary-Sector Certification

Primary-Sector Certification, Does Your Business Qualify and Why You Want it

Primary-sector certification in North Dakota opens the door to state and local incentives to support business growth. 

Some of those programs include Automation Tax Credit, Bank of ND PACE low interest financing, ND Development Fund and ND New Jobs, just to name a few. 

Minnesota also has attractive incentives and financing like the Job Creation Fund and Minnesota Investment Fund geared towards primary-sector companies. However, Minnesota does not require companies to certify their primary-sector status through a formal process.

For a full list of qualifying incentives and funding programs, please visit our website.

What companies Qualify?

A primary-sector business is one which, through the employment of knowledge or labor adds value to a product, process, or service which results in the creation of new wealth. A majority of its revenue must be derived from outside of the state. A primary-sector company can have two employees or two-thousand; they can do their work anywhere in the world and are not tied to a geographic location. 

How do I get my company certified? 

Primary-sector certification is a designation administered by the North Dakota Department of Commerce. Once you fill out the two-page form, application approval usually takes three to four weeks.

Details about North Dakota’s primary sector certification are available here.  The application can be found here.

A company will remain primary-sector certified for four years but then must re-apply for certification.

Formal certification is not needed in Minnesota.

Any incentive or program in MN will typically have a page describing the program, the eligibility and the process. We often help companies determine what programs or incentives may be a good fit. 

The GFMEDC prides itself on intimately understanding the variety of incentives and programs offered by Minnesota and North Dakota and local municipalities. We are here to help primary-sector companies identify resources that meet their circumstance and navigate the process of program and incentive applications.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us! (701) 364-1900.

You can never apply too early, but you can quickly apply too late

To give you a simple example of the importance of maintaining a current primary-sector certification, if a ND company does not have an active primary-sector certification at the time of purchase and possession of a new piece of autonomous equipment, they will not be eligible for the automation tax credit. It is important for primary-sector companies to maintain certification to avoid missing out on key state and local incentives and resources.

If you are unsure about the status of your primary-sector certification or have questions, please contact Ryan Aasheim at raasheim@gfmedc.com or (701) 364-1919.

For more information: ND Department of Commerce Primary-Sector Information

For Minnesota, check out: https://mn.gov/deed/business/

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