MEMA Continues NAFTA Outreach on Capitol Hill

Date: September 18, 2017

As part of our ongoing campaign to educate the administration and legislators on the potential impacts of renegotiating or modernizing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), MEMA has released a one-page, graphical report on the economic impact of the motor vehicle parts manufacturing industry on the U.S. economy.

This week, the mini report was sent to every House and Senate office on Capitol Hill, as MEMA and its four specialized divisions align with the goals of the Trump administration and Congress to strengthen America’s global manufacturing competitiveness and to create more American jobs.

This is just one step in a multi-pronged effort to communicate MEMA’s positions on NAFTA renegotiations. In comments submitted June 12 to United States Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer, MEMA took a firm stance on behalf of its members arguing that great care be taken in renegotiating or modernizing NAFTA. Since then, MEMA testified before the United States Trade Representative (USTR) during a June 28 public hearing, released a critical study on the effects of NAFTA renegotiation, and held a standing-room-only policy panel discussion, “NAFTA and the Automotive Industry: What Will Keep America Competitive?,” on Aug. 9 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

The “mini report” reflects the results of the NAFTA study, commissioned by MEMA and conducted independently by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) this spring, which examined the real-world implications of changes to NAFTA on the motor vehicle sector.  According to the study, an increase in NAFTA’s tariffs or rules of origin could drive up costs per vehicle substantially. And it would place the U.S. motor vehicle companies at a disadvantage against other countries, which import about the same percentage of components from low-cost countries as their U.S counterparts do now.

More than 871,000 Americans are directly employed by the automotive parts manufacturing industry. This number, which is up from 734,000 in 2012, represents 2.9 percent of the jobs in the total U.S. employment market and 2.4 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). Together with indirect and employment-induced jobs, the total employment impact of the motor vehicle parts manufacturing industry is 4.26 million jobs, an increase of nearly 18 percent from 3.26 million in 2012. 

The mini-report can be downloaded by MEMA members who would like to share this valuable information with their employees and local officials.

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