Reposted from the Alliance for American Manufacturing blog
Alliance for American Manufacturing | February 8, 2013
The annual U.S. trade figures for 2012 were released this morning by the Department of Commerce:
- The annual U.S. international trade deficit in goods and services fell slightly in 2012 (due in part to a decline in petroluem imports), to $540.4 billion, from $560 billion in 2011.
- The annual U.S. goods deficit with Chinaskyrocketed from $295 billion in 2011 to an all-time record of $315 billion in 2012.
Said Scott Paul, President of the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM):
“If Washington spent as much time worrying about the trade deficit as it did the budget deficit, our unemployment rate would be a lot lower than it is right now.
“The record trade deficit with China will not disappear on its own. Congress and the Administration must take on currency manipulation and monetary policy, as well as China’s persistent cheating on its trade obligations and our own economic policy, which still favors outsourcing over insourcing.”
A new report released this week by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) calls for urgent reduction in U.S. trade deficits in order to grow jobs. The study suggests that eliminating currency manipulation by trading partners, and investing in a series of coordinated manufacturing policies, could create between 2.2 million and 4.7 million U.S. jobs. Reducing the trade deficit could also lead to a manufacturing recovery, especially in industrial states like Ohio.
AAM is particularly concerned by America’s mushrooming trade gap with China, which is estimated to have claimed 2.7 million U.S. jobs between 2001-2011, including 2.1 million manufacturing jobs.
During his re-election campaign last fall, President Obama set a goal of creating 1 million new manufacturing jobs in his second term. To track the president’s progress toward increased manufacturing employment, AAM has launched the #AAMeter (which currently stands at +4,000 jobs).
In a letter to the president ahead of Tuesday’s ‘State of the Union’ address, Paul said tackling China’s egregious violations of international trade law and adopting a cohesive strategy to bolster the nation’s key industrial sectors would boost manufacturing jobs and help the president fulfill his campaign pledge. Click here to read the full letter.