The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) today praised a bipartisan group of 60 Senators for signing a letter urging Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman to address currency manipulation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) led the bipartisan effort.
The Senate's letter follows a similar effort in June by 230 House Members urging the President to take action on currency manipulation by America's trading partners. It comes on the heels of Japan joining TPP negotiations, even as the U.S. trade deficit with Japan climbed sharply in June. China has also expressed growing interest in the regional trade pact.
Said AAM President Scott Paul:
“We’d like to commend Senators Graham and Stabenow for collecting 60 bipartisan signatures among their Senate colleagues. These Senators have sent a clear message to President Obama that trading partners like Japan must open their markets and stop manipulating their currency if they hope to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
"Both Houses of Congress have now shown majority support for addressing currency manipulation, and it is past time for the Administration to act.
"Unfortunately, the White House has yet to acknowledge this clear message, which reflects overwhelming voter concern about unfair practices by America's trading partners.
“Failing to address currency manipulation in the TPP would mean U.S. companies and workers will end up paying dearly for expanded trade in the Asia-Pacific region.”
AAM has previously voiced concerns about Japan's closed market and currency manipulation, including:
- An April 12 , 2013 press statement urging the Obama Administration to address currency issues before concluding any TPP discussions with Japan.
- A February 23, 2013 op-ed by Paul that identified problems posed by Japan's market barriers and currency manipulation.
- A May 22, 2012 letter, co-signed by AAM and a broad cross-section of U.S. manufacturers and industrial groups, urging the Obama Administration to include rules governing currency manipulation as a key point of any future trade agreements.