President Obama's point man on trade, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman (@MikeFroman), met recently with the NEMA Board of Governors. Why? I venture a guess that it's because they care about trade and access to international markets. If I'm right, it turns out they are in good company.   

Recent polling commissioned by the Business Roundtable (BRT) found that 82 percent of Americans support U.S. trade negotiations to open foreign markets and ensure fair and enforceable trade. The same poll found that 78 percent support Congress taking up and passing Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) legislation to help put trade agreements in place. (This is the same NEMA-supported legislation that many in organized labor say they oppose.)  Finally, a whopping 85 percent polled for BRT support current U.S. negotiations with Asia-Pacific and European countries.

Similar polling commissioned early this year by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) found consistent results:

  • 80 percent believe that the President and Congress should work together to put in place new trade agreements;
  • 76 percent support the United States seeking more trade agreements with additional countries; and
  • 61 percent would be more likely to vote for a candidate for Congress who supports free trade agreements.

Where do you stand? Do you know the relevance of trade for your company's future sales, employment and growth? Does your company sell and ship directly to customers abroad? Or perhaps your channel is through a foreign distributor? If you are manufacturing components rather than finished equipment, your direct customer may be state-side. But do you know whether the equipment or system containing your component is sent overseas?  If it is, your company is known as an "indirect exporter."

In all of these cases, access to foreign markets is meaningful for you and your company. By extension, U.S. efforts to open foreign markets for U.S. goods are also important for you. Share your story with employees and with Members of Congress through letters, emails, phone calls, meetings, articles, fact sheets and more. NEMA is ready to help.

This is important. Thanks.


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