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CME is concerned with expansion of the protectionist Buy America laws in New Jersey

Published by CME Webmaster on December 12, 2014


On Dec 11, the State of New Jersey Assembly Budget Committee released the Buy America bill for a final vote expected on Dec 18. This will bar Canadian companies bid on procurement projects in New Jersey.

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) is greatly concerned with the stateside adoption of protectionist Buy America legislations. These laws are designed to freeze out foreign, including Canadian, manufacturers from government funded infrastructure projects.

“I want to reiterate that it is time for all levels of governments in Canada to introduce reciprocal policies to level the playing field for Canadian manufacturers and exporters,” said CME President and CEO Jayson Myers. 

Buy America/American policies have prevented Canadian firms from supplying projects under the $900-billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act introduced in 2009 as an economic stimulus measure. Additionally, in 2014 US Congress adopted the protectionist policy for all water and wastewater projects and many States have adopted additional legislation for their own infrastructure projects.

CME recently raised concerns with the Prince Rupert Ferry Terminal replacement project in which Buy America provisions ensure that all iron and steel products used for terminal construction must be manufactured in the US, thus freezing out Canadian steel fabricators on work being done on Canadian soil.

Buy America does not have blanket support in the US and in New Jersey. Recently, 12 US business associations, including the US Chamber of Commerce, have come out strongly against the New Jersey-proposed Bill.

In their Dec 11 letter to the Assembly, they stated that the “new procurement requirements will increase costs for taxpayers, jeopardize additional investments and expansions in the state, and place an unrealistic administrative burden on state and local procurement officials.“

CME supports this position which reflects the integrated nature of North American supply chains.

CME is Canada’s largest trade and industry association, and the voice of manufacturing and global business in Canada. The association represents more than 10,000 leading companies nationwide. As Canada's leading business network, CME – through various initiatives including the establishment of the Canadian Manufacturing Coalition – touches more than 100,000 companies from coast to coast, engaged in manufacturing, global business and service-related industries.

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