Today, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman and Michigan Representative Sandy Levin and Congressman Joe Donnelly held a roundtable discussion about trade and manufacturing issues at Mack Tool and Engineering in South Bend. Also in attendance were representatives from Nucor, Reliable Metalcraft, Value Tool and Engineering, and the Alliance for American Manufacturing.
One of the most pressing concerns for Hoosier manufacturers voiced by attendees was the advantage Chinese competitors gain from that country's unfair manipulation of their currency.
Supported by Donnelly and Levin, H.R. 2378, The Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act, passed the House of Representatives by a broad bipartisan vote on September 29 and seeks to level the playing field for our small businesses by targeting exchange rate misalignment between the U.S. Dollar, Chinese Yuan and other major trading partners in order to reduce the unnatural comparative advantages that command economies like China's can use against market economies.
"It's past time to crack down on Chinese currency manipulation. It is estimated that China's continued undervaluing of its currency has already cost 55,000 Hoosier jobs, with 6,000 of those in north central Indiana alone," said Donnelly. "I will continue to work in Congress with leaders like Chairman Levin to fight against Chinese currency manipulation and other unfair trade policies that are bad for Hoosier businesses and bad for working families."
A report by the Alliance for American Manufacturing and the Economic Policy Institute conducted a study examining job loss due to currency manipulation and found that 6,000 jobs have been lost in Indiana's Second Congressional District. China undervalues its currency by anywhere from 15 to 40 percent, keeping the prices of its exports artificially low, undercutting the market for American-made goods, and forcing American businesses to close.
"U.S. workers and businesses can compete if the playing field with China is level, and I am proud to have worked with Joe Donnelly to get this landmark legislation to safeguard U.S. industries and U.S. jobs from China's currency manipulation approved by the U.S. House," said Rep. Sander Levin, Chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means. "Standing up for U.S. jobs and forcing China to play by the rules is vital to Indiana and throughout our nation's manufacturing base."