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Tags: free | trade | pharmaceutical | security

Fossella: We Must Reignite America's Spirit of Success

the american spirit in the united states

 (Aleksandr Gerasimov/Dreamstime)

By    |   Monday, 25 May 2020 12:59 PM EDT

America needs a manufacturing renaissance, a movement that could lead us to an economic recovery on a scale never before seen in the United States.

While he didn’t do it alone, President Trump’s economic agenda was instrumental in moving the country’s economy to new heights. Done right, we can not only bring our powerful economy back, we can truly make it — as the president likes to say — "We will end up being stronger than ever before."

It's time for restoration and rebirth of the American economy.

A restoration rooted in fair competition, freer trade, and putting America’s workers first.

The COVID-19 pandemic revealed many things about our country.

Perhaps the most disturbing revelation is the painful unveiling of America’s unhealthy overreliance on foreign manufacturing of prescription drugs and equipment.

Even ardent free-traders can understand that we have relied on foreign manufacturing and supply chains for our most important medicines and active pharmaceutical ingredients while placing America’s health, safety, and national security at grave risk.

Since the 1990s, U.S. companies have increasingly imported pharmaceutical products from India and China, where ingredients are cheaper and manufacturing is too, thanks in part to far fewer regulations there than here at home.

It's believed that about 80% of the basic components used in U.S. drugs, known as active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), come from China and India, though the exact dependence remains unknown since no reliable API registry exists.

Chinese pharmaceutical firms have captured 97% of the U.S. market for antibiotics and 90 % of the materials used in medicines to care for people seriously ill with coronavirus.

Put simply, the United States now relies far too heavily on China and India for its drug supply.

The pharmaceuticals industry is only one area of concern. There are others.

Thankfully, history has demonstrated we can correct past mistakes in these areas.

For example, many people dismissed the long-stated American goal of becoming energy independent as fantasy, but President Trump led us there.

Likewise, we can, in effect, achieve American manufacturing independence — or at a minimum reduce our reliance on sole-sourced goods and products made abroad.

What caused our manufacturing base to move away from our country?

Simply put, America’s regulatory and tax environment made it too difficult and too expensive to make anything here.

We became a service economy and destroyed the middle class.

Our economy must be more about making things than "just doing things."

The bottom line? We must make more stuff here.

America needs a new way forward, not just to recover from the economic yoke of the pandemic, but to right our economic ship, and thus our livelihoods.

Individuals and nations have been trading since the beginning of time. And free trade is the gold standard. But, do we currently really have free trade? The short answer is, "No."

We cannot uphold a rule of law in our country, requiring companies to comply with intellectual property laws, while other countries routinely steal our technology and manufacturing secrets.

This is neither free trade nor fair competition.

It is piracy.

We need to balance our interests of commerce and national security, by repatriating the manufacture of everything that is strategic. In some of theses cases, the products are of essential nature; in others they have commercial importance.

We need to be aware that some countries are more than just trading partners that are friendly; they are competitors who wish us ill.

We need new policies to restore our ability to produce, to build, and to make.

This will lead us to a place where we are stronger than ever.

To that end, the following policies should be designed to reopen, or open anew, America’s factories.

1.) Tax incentives to move existing, expansion and new jobs from overseas to the U.S. There are many ways to structure these incentives, including income, sales, corporate and payroll tax reductions, credits, abatements, etc. Grants or loans could also be used to spur investment in new plants and facilities.

2.) Continued rollback of regulatory burdens, being sure not to overreach in ways that would weaken sensible employment and environmental protections. President Trump has done more than any other president in history to remove unnecessary regulatory friction across a wide range of industries. Simply, we need to build on that and do more to make it easier and faster for entrepreneurs to open new businesses and for companies to expand with less red tape.

3. Creation of a Manufacturing Council, serving at the pleasure of the president, to advise on identifying and removing the obstacles to regeneration of our manufacturing base.

The American worker can compete with anybody in the world. For too long and too often, the deck, however, has been stacked against them. Well, it’s time to reshuffle the deck.

Some political leaders have used this health crisis as a way to reshape our way of life and to put us on a path of more government control and planning. I think that is the wrong direction.

The better way forward is to restore and reignite the American spirit of success and to:

Make It For Our Workers Again.

Make It For Our Security Again.

Make It For Our Future Again.

Make It In America Again.

Vito Fossella is the former Republican congressman from Staten Island, New York.

© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

America needs a new way forward, not just to recover from the economic yoke of the pandemic, but to right our economic ship, and thus our livelihoods.
free, trade, pharmaceutical, security
Monday, 25 May 2020 12:59 PM
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