IAM Calls for Supply Chain Resilience, Reshoring U.S. Jobs at Trade Hearing

The IAM sounded the alarm on the negative effects of offshoring production of critical materials at a recent U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) hearing in St. Paul, Minn.

“IAM members have seen first-hand the effects of interruptions to our nation’s supply chain, as companies have offshored production of important components,” said Peter Greenberg, IAM Special Assistant to the International President for Trade and Globalization, who testified at the hearing. “Finally, we have an administration that is willing to address this challenge head on.” 

The USTR supply chain resilience hearing highlighted the fragile nature of long distance supply chains.

“Often our members’ production is interrupted due to a lack of parts now supplied by manufacturers in distant countries,” said Greenberg. “Companies moved their supply chains overseas to maximize their profits and these moves were enabled by short-sighted policies in place at that time. The Biden Administration’s worker-centered trade policy will strengthen our supply chains, create jobs, and improve our national security.“

The USTR, led by Ambassador Katherine Tai, has been at the forefront of the Biden Administration’s worker-centered trade policy, replacing decades of misguided trade strategies that slashed U.S. jobs.

The Trade Representative’s office aims to shape U.S. trade policy that balances the demand for offshore production with the supply of American workers that can do the work, while protecting American national interests. The International Monetary Fund has warned of “shock waves” hitting global supply chains, and the need to have diversity of source producers to limit economic disruptions in the future.

Some countries now have near monopolies on critical materials, which leaves workers vulnerable to work stoppages often due to a lack of parts now supplied by manufacturers in distant countries.  

Greenberg was joined by several IAM leaders to support his testimony, including;

  • Andrew Peltier, District 77 Assistant Directing Business Representative 
  • Dan Wicklem, District 77 Secretary-Treasurer
  • Ingrid Vendela, District 77 Business Representative Trainee / Vice President
  • Grant Whalen, District 77 Business Representative
  • Sherman Phillips, District 77 Business Representative and Organizer
  • Joe Baratta, Local 623
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