"The mission of the American Manufacturing Trade Action Coalition (AMTAC) is to preserve and create American manufacturing jobs through the establishment of trade policy and other measures necessary for the U.S. manufacturing sector to stabilize and grow."
Employment in the U.S. manufacturing sector provides millions of American jobs, enables a diverse workforce, and sustains communities and families in both urban and rural America. Manufacturing contributes billions of dollars to the nation’s gross domestic product on an annual basis and is vital to the armed forces and overall national security of the United States.
The crisis that has engulfed American manufacturing is historic and unprecedented. It is demonstrated by the loss of millions of U.S. jobs, major company bankruptcies, and hundreds of plant closures. In addition, the hemorrhage in the U.S. manufacturing sector has a ripple effect throughout the economy due to the fact that an additional one-and-a-half non-manufacturing jobs are lost for every single manufacturing job lost. The culmination of these events prompted the formation of this coalition.
In large part, these job losses have been created by trade deals such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the World Trade Organization (WTO)-Uruguay Round, and China’s accession to the WTO where manufacturing jobs often have been used as bargaining chips to settle non-trade issues. These same trade agreements are hollowing out all American manufacturing.
This manufacturing crisis which has cost the U.S. economy more than 5.7 million manufacturing jobs in the last decade is cause for alarm. Both our national and economic security are at risk.
America ran an unsustainable cumulative trade deficit of more than $4.3 trillion in manufactured goods between 2000 and 2009. Consequences of this huge trade deficit include markedly slower U.S. economic growth, havoc with the lives of individual Americans and their families and communities, weakening the underlying strength of the dollar, large capital inflows for additional production capacity in low-wage nations, increasing foreign ownership of U.S. assets and companies, and the condoning of pollution, unfair labor and other reprehensible production practices around the globe.
To address these problems, AMTAC supports the following action steps:
Block trade legislation detrimental to U.S. manufacturing jobs and investment.
Insist on vigorous enforcement of existing U.S. trade laws.
Develop proactive legislative and administrative remedies, including an examination of the value of existing trade laws to U.S. manufacturing and revision of U.S. tax law to eliminate the disadvantage to U.S. manufacturers caused by foreign border-adjusted taxes such as the value-added taxes (VAT).
Ensure that the interest of the domestic industry and workers are upheld in the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS) and as part of major trade negotiations including the WTO Doha Round and the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
Strengthen and expand “Buy American” laws with respect to government procurement.
Review and promote polices, beyond trade related measures, to benefit domestic industry.