The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) is declaring President Donald Trump’s trip to Asia a “make-or-break moment” for the administration on trade.
Thus far, the organization stated in a recent press release, he has not delivered on his promise to transform the United States’ trade relationship with China, adding that he “hasn’t delivered” and that the upcoming trip will prove “whether he will be able to get the job done.”
“One-sided trade with many Asian countries have led to factory closures and job losses,” said AAM President Scott Paul. “I’m glad Trump made trade relationships a priority, but without action, American workers continue to struggle.”
The major unfulfilled promises, Paul said, were cutting trade deficits, labeling China a currency manipulator, and stopping the country’s surge of steel imports.
“After 10 months in office, American workers will be anxiously watching to see if you will turn your tough trade rhetoric into real action,” Paul wrote in a letter to the president. “Despite your campaign promises to crack down on unfair trade and negotiate better trade agreements, since taking office, your words on many issues have resulted in either inaction or confusion as to the path forward.”
Because of this inaction, Paul noted, more than 21% additional steel has hit America’s shores, contributing in part to layoffs at two Pennsylvania steel mills, “including one that produces armor plate used in the production of vehicles that protect service men and women from IED attacks in Afghanistan.”
“Our national security rests on a healthy industrial base,” Paul said. “If domestic manufacturing capabilities deteriorate further, we may be forced to rely on countries like China and Russia to supply steel for our military and critical infrastructure needs. We cannot let that happen.”