The U.S. Chamber of Commerce called today’s employment report “progress,” but renewed its call for the federal government to ease regulations on American businesses.

The unemployment rate decreased to 8.8% and 216,000 new jobs were created in March.

“The employment data released this morning was another strong report and consistent with growth of about 2.5 million net new jobs over the course of the year, said Dr. Martin Regalia, Chief Economist of the Chamber. “To build on this progress, Washington must work to alleviate the regulatory burden and open new markets for American businesses.

“Positive indicators in the broader economy have produced consistent improvements in the labor market over the past few months. However, with the political disruptions in the Middle East and North Africa, the tragic events in Japan, and the fiscal problems in Western Europe, the outlook for the international economy has worsened recently. If these problems were to spillover to the U.S. economy, causing growth to slow below its potential rate of growth of between 2.5 – 2.75%, they could upset the modest job gains we’ve seen thus far.”