WASHINGTON—The Alliance for American Manufacturing has asked President Obama to take a firm stand in favor of U.S. manufacturing in his upcoming talks with new Chinese President Xi Jinping.
"The time for talk is over; the time for action is here," said AAM President Scott Paul in his June 3 letter to Obama.
"Americans are desperate to put our economy back on firm footing and create a bright and prosperous future," Paul said. "China's policies are designed to promote its own success while blatantly disregarding, if not clearly undermining, our own.
"We can no longer afford to ignore China's actions and activities," Paul wrote.
While a tough stand against Chinese manufacturing policy is crucial for America's manufacturing sector, Paul wrote, it is even more vital for national security.
Paul referred to an AAM-sponsored study noting the U.S. military's dependence on foreign suppliers, and also to news reports showing that crucial U.S. weapons system designs probably have fallen into Chinese hands.
"Given these new and increasing threats, dialogue and traditional forms of engagement clearly are not working," he wrote. "China's ability to mobilize these efforts has been fueled, in part, by our nation's failure to aggressively update and reform our trade polices vis-à-vis theirs."
During the June 7-8 discussions in California, Obama should ask Xi to cooperate in identifying any perpetrators of Internet or electronic incursions into U.S. national security matters, Paul said. He should also emphasize that the U.S. will use all available tools to maximize domestic sources in its defense and governmental supply chains; will enforce trade and intellectual property rights laws; and act to counter Chinese currency manipulation.
The AAM is a coalition of the United Steelworkers union and various manufacturing entities. The organization has long advocated a get-tough stance with China. It also has sponsored a number of studies demonstrating the damage done to the U.S. economy by the U.S. trade deficit with China.