January 23, 2017 Leave a comment
January 23, 2017 Leave a comment
January 4, 2017 Leave a comment
Ford Motor Co. is canceling plans to build a new manufacturing plant in Mexico and instead is investing $700 million in Michigan, the automaker announced on Tuesday.
The company’s CEO, Mark Fields, told CNN that the move is a “vote of confidence” in President-elect Donald Trump’s pledge to create a pro-business environment. Fields emphasized, however, that he did not negotiate any special deal with Trump.
“We didn’t cut a deal with Trump,” he said. “We did it for our business.”
Trump bashed Ford on the campaign trail over the automaker’s plan to invest $1.6 billion in Mexico by shifting its North American small-car production south of the border. Ford had emphasized that the move would not affect U.S. jobs because the automaker would be putting new vehicles into the Michigan plants.
But now Ford will instead build the Ford Focus at an existing plant in Mexico. It will also invest $700 million in its plant in Flat Rock, Mich. and create 700 jobs in an effort to produce more electric and self-driving cars. The automaker has said it plans to build a fully self-driving car by 2021.
“I am thrilled that we have been able to secure additional UAW-Ford jobs for American workers,” said Jimmy Settles, United Auto Workers vice president, according to CNN.
A Ford spokeswoman told The Hill that Trump’s team was notified of their plans Tuesday morning.
Ford is not the only automaker to draw Trump’s ire. Earlier Tuesday, the president-elect blasted General Motors on Twitter, threatening a “big border tax” on GM models made in Mexico.
November 18, 2016 Leave a comment
On Thursday, Trump posted on Twitter: “I worked hard with Bill Ford to keep the Lincoln plant in Kentucky. I owed it to the great State of Kentucky for their confidence in me!”
“He will be keeping the Lincoln plant in Kentucky – no Mexico,” the President-elect tweeted.
But Ford has repeatedly said it has no plans to close any U.S. plants and likely could not do so under the terms of the current United Auto Workers contract that expires in 2019.
This is not the first time Trump’s comments about Ford production have been called into question. Last year, he took credit for Ford moving work from Mexico to Ohio, while the automaker had already made the decision in 2011 – long before Trump announced a run for president.
Spokeswoman Christin Baker said Ford “confirmed with the President-elect that our small Lincoln utility vehicle made at the Louisville Assembly plant will stay in Kentucky”.
“We are encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the United States,” she added, in a statement.
April 8, 2016 Leave a comment
DETROIT/WASHINGTON/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N) on Tuesday announced it would invest $1.6 billion to build more small cars in Mexico, starting in 2018, triggering a fresh blast of criticism from Republican front-runner Donald Trump. Read more of this post
August 11, 2015 1 Comment
Last week, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) filed a legal brief in the World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute over mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL), arguing that the $3 billion sought by Canada and Mexico in retaliatory tariffs are a dramatic overestimation of damages. Read more of this post
March 13, 2013 1 Comment
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is facing a backlash from small livestock producers and others over its move to tighten meat-labeling regulations, which would force them to separate animals based on where they were born, raised and slaughtered.
The step is being billed as a way to bring the U.S. into compliance with World Trade Organization agreements, but there are a growing number in the industry who argue it will alienate the country’s trading partners and force small American meat farms out of business.
“Only the government could take a costly, cumbersome rule like mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) and make it worse even as it claims to ‘fix it,” said American Meat Institute President J. Patrick Boyle.
Boyle believes the proposed rule will make the current requirements even more expensive, onerous and disruptive.
The Department of Agriculture recently proposed the new rule for labeling muscle cuts of meat. That means beef, veal, lamb, pork, goat and chicken — which are now labeled as simply a product of one country or more — will have to include additional details including where each animal was born, raised and slaughtered.
The new labeling regulations would force thousands of meat processors and retailers to change the way they label products. The USDA estimates the initial cost would range between $17 million and $48 million.
The USDA’s Agriculture Marketing Service began working on a rule change after the U.S. partially lost a WTO appeal in 2012. “The USDA expects that these changes will improve the overall operation of the program and also bring the current mandatory (country of origin labeling) requirements into compliance with the U.S. international trade obligations,” USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a statement.
The National Farmers Union praised the rule change as an “excellent response.”
October 2, 2012 Leave a comment
U.S. business groups said on Tuesday they were worried about a damaging trade war with Mexico if President Barack Obama’s administration follows through on a preliminary decision to terminate a 16-year-old tomato trade agreement.
“We think the U.S.-Mexico economic relationship is tremendously important,” Patrick Kilbride of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce told reporters on a conference call. “We don’t want to see another trade war ignited.”
Florida tomato growers have pressed the Obama administration since June to terminate a 1996 agreement with Mexico on the grounds it fails to protect them against Mexican tomatoes sold in the United States below the cost of production.
Florida growers historically compete with Mexico for the U.S. winter and early spring tomato market. Terminating the pact would clear the way for Florida growers to file a new anti-dumping case against their Mexican rivals.
Last week, the U.S. Commerce Department stopped short of immediately tearing up the agreement, but took a preliminary position in favor of ending the pact. It promised a final decision “as soon as practicable” and in no more than 270 days.
The decision surprised Mexican officials and tomato producers, who have offered to renegotiate the pact. They argue the agreement has benefited U.S. consumers and brought stability to the North American market.
Bill Reinsch, president of the National Foreign Trade Council, said business groups were concerned the Obama administration might rush to make a final a decision ahead of the Nov. 6 presidential election, in which Florida is expected to play a decisive role.
September 7, 2012 Leave a comment
DENVER, Colo., Sept. 5, 2012 — /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Made in the USA Foundation led a coalition of groups filing suit against the World Trade Organization, the U.S. Trade Representative and the Secretary of Agriculture to keep the U.S. Country of Origin Labeling Act (COOL) in force. The WTO ruled this summer that COOL, which required meat from Mexico, Canada and other nations to be labeled as such, discriminated against imported beef.
The lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court in Denver, Colorado. The case seeks a court order declaring that the World Trade Organization does not have the authority to override U.S. law. The Country of Origin Labeling Act requires all meat, fish, chicken and produce to be labeled at the grocery store with an accurate country of origin.
Canada and Mexico challenged the U.S. law at the World Trade Organization, arguing that the law unfairly discriminates against imports from these two nations. The WTO does not have permanent judges. The WTO appointed an appellate panel of three judges that included a Mexican lawyer who has represented Mexico in trade cases.
Joel D. Joseph, general counsel of the Made in the USA Foundation, said, “the WTO does not have the right to interfere with domestic laws of the United States. When the U.S. joined the WTO, it agreed to do so only if the WTO could not overrule U.S. law. More than 90% of U.S. consumers favor the Country of Origin Labeling Act. This law does not discriminate against any country, it merely requires labeling. Consumers have a right to decide whether to buy U.S. or imported meat, and accurate labeling is a consumer right.” Joseph added, “the WTO’s appellate panel was unfairly biased against the United States and should not have allowed a Mexican lawyer, with an obvious conflict of interest, to sit on the panel.”
This is the third major decision of a WTO court that attempts to overturn U.S. law. The prior two cases involved “dolphin safe” labels on tuna and a U.S. ban on flavored cigarettes. Congress allows tuna to be labeled “dolphin safe” if it meets specific requirements. Mexico complained that this discriminates against Mexican tuna because Mexican tuna is not fished in a manner that protects dolphins.
Indonesia filed a complaint with the WTO charging that the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, that prohibits flavored cigarettes from being sold in the United States discriminates against Indonesia cigarettes. Indonesia produces clove-flavored cigarettes and wants to sell them in the U.S. The WTO ruled that the U.S. ban on flavored cigarettes discriminated against Indonesia.
The Made in the USA Foundation is a non-profit organization formed in 1989 to promote American-made products. The Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund (R-CALF) represents 5,400 ranchers and cattlemen in 45 states. Made in the USA Foundation and R-CALF were the primary supporters of the Country of Origin Labeling Act. Mile High Organics is a food distributor in Denver, Colorado that delivers food to homes throughout the state. Mile High Organics seeks to distribute local, Made in the USA food and supports country of origin labeling.
SOURCE Made in the USA Foundation
February 23, 2012 Leave a comment
If you happen to notice sometime later this year that you’re suddenly paying a lot more for orange juice, you can blame America’s food safety authorities. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, after several weeks of deliberation, has blocked imports of frozen, concentrated orange juice from Brazil, probably for the next 18 months or so, even though the agency says the juice is perfectly safe.
The FDA’s explanation is that its hands are legally tied. Its tests show that practically all concentrated juice from Brazil currently contains traces of the fungicide carbendazim, first detected in December by Coca-Cola, maker of Minute Maid juices. The amounts are small — so small that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says no consumers should be concerned.
The problem is, carbendazim has not been used on oranges in the U.S. in recent years, and the legal permission to use it on that crop has lapsed. As a result, there’s not a legal “tolerance” for residues of this pesticide in orange products. Read more of this post
February 23, 2012 Leave a comment
By Howard Wial @CNNMoney February 23, 2012: 5:34 AM ET
Howard Wial is a fellow for the Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program.
At first glance, manufacturing jobs would appear to be a dying breed.
The United States lost 6 million manufacturing jobs between early 2001 and late 2009. And despite small gains during the last two years, the trend in manufacturing employment for the last 30 years has been downward.
That has led some to argue that long-term job loss in the industry is inevitable. But our research shows otherwise.
There are two common versions of the “inevitability” argument. One holds that U.S. manufacturing wages are too high to be internationally competitive. The other maintains that manufacturing job losses are the result of productivity growth. Both arguments are wrong. Read more of this post