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Biden promotes stricter rules for ‘American buying’ on visit to Mack truck factory

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Washington, July 28 (Reuters)President Joe Biden will tour the Mack Trucks plant in Pennsylvania on Wednesday to stress the importance of American manufacturing and unveil unused rules that will gradually boost the American content of goods purchased with taxpayer dollars.

Biden will meet with local members of the United Auto Workers (UAW), which represents 85% of the 2,500 workers at Mack Trucks’ Lehigh Valley plant, and receive a briefing on the company’s unused electric-powered garbage truck in New York. The White House said the city of North Carolina.

The Democratic president signed an executive order during his first week in office in January to harness the vast purchasing power of the federal government – the world’s largest single buyer of consumer goods – to boost US manufacturing.

Officials said the unused rules were unveiled Wednesday following dozens of meetings with industry and interagency discussions over the former 180 days. They will expand existing “Buy American Products” provisions, which apply to about a third of the $600 billion in goods and services the federal government purchases each year.

If approved, they would hoist the minimum US content of manufactured goods from 55% to 60% immediately, then to 65% in 2024 and 75% in 2029.

“This proposal will enhance procurement as a tool to strategically shape markets and accelerate innovation,” said a senior official Administration official said. “The coming of our economy depends on continuing to make smart investments, and giving our workers and businesses the tools they need to compete.”

UAW President Ray Curry welcomed the unused proposal, saying the president was making pleasing on his promise to focus public policy on supporting well-paying union jobs for Americans.

“Joe Biden understands what it means to forbid companies from offshoring those jobs and make sure we reverse the trend,” Carey said in a statement. “Hello, Mr. President.”

Officials said interested parties would have 60 days to comment on the changes prior finalizing the rule.

The rule also proposes improved price preferences for some critical products and ingredients, a move officials said would aid boost local production of vital goods and materials.

It will enhance transparency by requiring manufacturers to report the gross domestic content of their products, rather than simply certifying that they meet the content limit.

Officials said the unused rule would not apply to services, which account for more than half of the $600 billion in annual government purchases by the Department of Defense and other agencies.

Nor is it expected to have an immediate impact on supply chain bottlenecks such as the global semiconductor shortage that has slowed auto manufacturing and increased inflation.

Officials said the Biden administration would persevere to address that impasse through other measures.

Private sector initiatives to boost purchases of US-made goods have faltered in recent years, given challenges in sourcing products at competitive prices.

Wal-Mart Corporation WMT.NFor example, it committed in 2013 to purchase $250 billion in US goods by 2023, but dropped the “Made in the USA” tagline from products on its website just two years later following a critical investigation by the US Federal Trade Commission.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Additional reporting by Nandita Bose; Editing by Simon Cameron Moore and William MacLean)

((andrea.shalal@tr.com; +1 202-815-7432;))

The opinions and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Nasdaq, Inc.

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