Congress Should Act NOW to pass the MTB

By October 17, 2013Economy, Trade

With the federal government now reopened, Congress should refocus its efforts on passing legislation that strengthens manufacturing and grows the economy.  One of the easiest and most bipartisan ways to achieve this result is to pass the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB).

For three decades, Congress has supported manufacturing in America by suspending import taxes on necessary manufacturing inputs that are not available in the United States and must be imported from other countries. The last MTB enacted into law expired on December 31, 2012, meaning manufacturers have been operating without an MTB for 289 days, which has resulted in significantly higher costs and in some cases, reduced hours for workers and even layoffs.

The MTB strengthens manufacturers’ global competitiveness by cutting their production costs. Doing so supports thousands of domestic manufacturing jobs. In fact, the MTB enacted in 2010 was estimated to support 90,000 jobs, increase U.S. production by $4.6 billion and expand U.S. GDP by $3.5 billion. Moreover, failure to pass a new MTB will result in a staggering $748 million tax hike on manufacturing over the next three years. This translates into a whopping $1.857 billion in economic losses. Manufacturers across a broad range of industries are already paying this $748 million tax and are calling on Congress to act as swiftly as possible on this commonsense, bipartisan and jobs-supporting legislation.

The MTB enjoys broad bipartisan support in both chambers of Congress and the House has introduced H.R. 2708, the U.S. Job Creation and Manufacturing Competitiveness Act.  Now both the House and Senate must act expeditiously to pass critical MTB legislation and give manufacturers the tariff relief they need to enhance their competitiveness, create jobs and invest in their U.S.-based manufacturing.

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