The Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) has expressed its support of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), but has asked the Obama administration and Congress to address long-term protections for medium to small motor vehicle parts suppliers as part of the agreement.
“MEMA supports TPP and urges Congress to ratify the agreement. However, we are concerned the agreement may not provide adequate long-term protections for small, regional U.S. suppliers that provide employment in all 50 states,” said Steve Handschuh, president and CEO of MEMA. “For this reason, MEMA calls upon the White House and Congress to take immediate action to provide additional resources for small and medium suppliers to continue to grow and prosper in the 21st century.”
In its statement to the USTR, MEMA cited these specific actions:
* Active monitoring of compliance with the agreement by the administration and Congress, particularly the rules of origin: This must be followed up by swift and direct enforcement actions when necessary. MEMA also encourages the administration to regularly solicit feedback from small and medium U.S. suppliers to identify issues of concern;
* Improvements to the Federal Research and Development Tax Credit: MEMA applauds Congress and the administration for making the tax credit permanent, but encourages consideration of ways to optimize the benefits;
* Adoption of the changes to the existing program outlined in the Vehicle Innovation Act (H.R. 4106/S. 1408) to improve vehicle technologies research and development at the Department of Energy (DOE): Many of the improvements outlined in this legislation can be made to the DOE program within the current authorization.
“MEMA members operate in a global industry with suppliers, customers, and facilities worldwide and, the TPP is an important step forward for global competitiveness,” Handschuh said. “MEMA stands ready to work with all parties to finalize the agreement and at the same time address the issues necessary to provide all suppliers with the tools and opportunities to compete in a global economy. “