House Passes Long-Delayed Tariff Bill, Now It’s the Senate’s Turn

By July 21, 2010Trade

The Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB),  H.R. 4380, also known as the U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act of 2010, passed the House under suspension today, 378-43. The MTB is a critical issue for manufacturers in America, and the National Association of Manufacturers is very pleased to see this bill pass with such strong bipartisan support. In fact, the NAM “key voted” this bill, indicating that it is a core piece of legislation for the manufacturing sector and our members.

The MTB suspends duties on hundreds of inputs and raw materials that American manufacturers use in everyday production. The catch is, those imports cannot be made in the United States or are otherwise unavailable from any domestic source. They are inputs that can only be sourced from outside the United States — and the tariffs the U.S. charges on this inputs are thus a tax on making things in America. The MTB “suspends” the tariff on these necessary inputs, saving manufacturers money that can be used to strengthen their domestic manufacturing presence, add jobs, increase productivity, and put into R&D.

This vote is an even happier result because the MTB has suffered a series of delays stretching back nearly three years. The previous MTB’s provisions expired in December 2009, leaving U.S. manufacturers to pay millions of dollars a month in duties on products they need for their U.S. production but can’t get from any domestic source.

The overwhelming and bipartisan vote shows that the House, even after all the delays, ultimately recognized the importance of the bill, and the vote also sends a strong message to the U.S. Senate to move expeditiously to pass the legislation. The bill represents a real commitment to strengthening manufacturing in America.

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UPDATE (5:15 p.m.): NAM President John Engler issued a statement lauding passage.

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