Bill signed by President targets top priorities for 2021
By Terry Troy
While most Americans obviously are happy with the passage of the COVID relief bill signed by President Trump, manufacturers are also celebrating. Thanks to an amendment from the U.S. Senate, manufacturers will be able to secure help for the future, according to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM).
The priorities came with the passage of Senate amendment to H.R. 133 – United States Mexico Economic Partnership Act (Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021). Initially President Trump balked at signing the bill, holding out for an increase in the amount of individual stimulus checks.
“Manufacturers secured many of our top priorities in this important legislation, including numerous provisions the NAM first proposed in our ‘American Renewal Action Plan,’” said Jordan Stoick, vice president of government relations for the NAM in a prepared statement. “The additional funds for the Paycheck Protection Program will provide a continued lifeline for small manufacturers. Furthermore, the resources for testing and vaccine distribution, as well as tax incentives for manufacturers that keep employees on payroll and invest in safety measures, will ensure America’s dedicated, essential manufacturing workers can continue their mission safely.
“Across the country, manufacturers are providing the vaccines, PPE and supplies needed to defeat COVID-19, so we have been fully engaged with House and Senate leaders to keep this vital work going. We have a difficult winter ahead, and this legislation will help save lives and livelihoods and keep manufacturers operating. As folks continue to roll up their sleeves and receive initial doses of the vaccine, we are also looking to the other priorities facing us in the new year—including historic investments in infrastructure, energy innovation and more—to ensure manufacturers can lead a full economic recovery and American renewal.”
Amid rising cases of COVID-19, the NAM still expects to see increasing efforts to shut down businesses. But given how crucial manufacturing is to fighting the virus and maintaining the economy, the NAM is working to ensure that manufacturers can keep operating and that the North American supply chain will remain robust.
Manufacturers in the United States are providing frontline health care workers with the resources they need to protect and save lives—and providing daily essentials to citizens across North America. Suppliers in Mexico are key to that effort. A shutdown of facilities in either country could damage not only the ongoing economic recovery, but also the supply chain for critical goods as well as undermine the global response to COVID-19.
With the earlier ratification of the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement, the relationship between North American countries is more important than ever. Each day last year, $2.3 billion worth of manufactured goods crossed the U.S.–Mexican–Canadian
borders. And today, Mexico and Canada purchase more from the U.S. than our next 11 trading partners combined.
“Manufacturers across North America are central to critical infrastructure industries and essential services,” said Ken Monahan, Senior Director of International Economic Affairs for the NAM. “We are committed to delivering the products and services that make it possible for all of our countries to respond to COVID-19 and deliver a stronger, more prosperous future.”