Manzullo: Plan would level playing field for American manufacturers competing with China
From press release
WASHINGTON—U.S. Rep. Don Manzullo (R-16) said June 17 the American and Chinese governments need to take several actions to ensure American manufacturers can compete fairly with Chinese companies in the United States and overseas.
Manzullo, who for many years has co-sponsored legislation to crack down on China’s unfair trade practices, offered his action plan June 17 to members of the House Ways & Means Committee, who held a hearing to scrutinize China’s trade and industrial policies. Manzullo is the senior Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and the Global Environment, and for years led the U.S.-China Interparliamentary Exchange.
Manzullo said: “For too long, China has flouted the rules of fair trade to give its manufacturers an unfair competitive advantage over American workers. And for too long, the American government has let China get away with it. With too many Americans still looking for work, we can no longer allow China to unfairly lure our jobs. I have no doubt that American workers can compete with anyone in the world, but the competition must be fair. I urge both the Chinese and American governments to take action to finally level the playing field for all manufacturers.”
Specifically, Manzullo offered the following reforms:
• CHINA MUST END ITS CURRENCY MANIPULATION—By tying its currency to the U.S. dollar, China gives its manufacturers a 25 percent cost advantage over its American competitors. China must allow its currency to float on the open market or face penalties for illegal export subsidies.
• U.S. MUST ENFORCE EXISTING TRADE LAWS ON CHINA—In addition to fighting currency manipulation, the administration must use all the tools of fair trade to enforce a level playing field, including countervailing duty and anti-dumping laws. The Commerce Department should also initiate unfair trade cases on behalf of small businesses that can’t afford to pursue international trade cases.
• CHINA MUST TIGHTEN ITS INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAWS AND ENFORCEMENT—Too many American companies that try to do business in China are pirated by Chinese companies that simply copy and steal their designs and manufacture knock-offs of their products. China needs to understand it’s in their best interests, as well, to strengthen and enforce their intellectual property laws. The U.S. government must also be more vigilant in stopping piracy.
• U.S. SHOULD NOT ALLOW CHINA TO COMPETE FOR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS—The U.S. must oppose a government procurement side agreement at the World Trade Organization that could allow China to enter the federal government’s procurement bidding process. Chinese firms would swamp the U.S. government procurement marketplace and weaken the U.S. defense industrial base, putting our nation at risk from our enemies.
• U.S. SHOULD MODERNIZE ITS EXPORT CONTROL LAWS—Congress should pursue comprehensive export control reform so that widely-available technology can be exported to China without weeks or months of delay that often lead Chinese companies to purchase from other countries. This also helps our national security by focusing the time our export compliance officers spend on stopping bad guys from accessing truly sensitive technologies.
• U.S. SHOULD ENACT AN AGGRESSIVE EXPORT PROMOTION POLICY—We need to provide more resources, particularly to small and medium companies, to help increase access to information about the exporting process, the Chinese marketplace, specific business opportunities, and critical trade finance.
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