Manufacturing represents nearly 60% of total U.S. exports and will play a vital role in America’s economic recovery.
During his State of the Union address, President Obama laid out a blueprint for an "America Built to Last." That starts with American manufacturing. And in his FY2013 budget request, the president outlined strong support for manufacturers by increasing investments in advanced manufacturing, new trade promotion efforts, and innovation.
Today, the president toured the Boeing assembly facility in Everett, Washington, to announce new steps aimed at promoting American manufacturing and increasing U.S. exports. This visit comes on the heels of his trip to Milwaukee, Wisc., where he toured Master Lock, a company that is insourcing and selling their products all over the world.
Federal agencies are making significant investments in innovation and American manufacturing. During the past two years, we have begun to see positive signs in American manufacturing, with the manufacturing sector adding more than 400,000 jobs-the first period of sustained job growth in manufacturing since the 1990s.
Under the Obama administration, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) has invested $75.8 million in 68 projects across the country to support advanced manufacturing. Forty of those projects directly supported infrastructure development that will enable our economic regions to bolster their advanced manufacturing capacity. The $63.5 million invested in these 40 projects is expected to create or retain 12,579 American jobs and leverage nearly $1.6 billion in private investment. For every dollar EDA has invested in these projects, $25 in private investment will follow.
In Missouri, the St. Louis biosciences cluster has benefited from a $1.8 million Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge award to the St. Louis County Economic Council, the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment, and the St. Louis Minority Supplier Development Council to establish the St. Louis Biosciences Jobs and Innovation Accelerator project. This investment will accelerate the growth of the cluster by bringing early-stage technologies into the commercialization pipeline by addressing identified gaps and challenges, including access to a skilled workforce of experienced entrepreneurs that are needed to enable companies to grow and provide on-the-job-training for individuals hired by bioscience start-ups, as well as established bioscience companies.
EDA’s strategic investments enhance the competitiveness of America’s communities, spur innovation, and create jobs. EDA’s flexible programs leverage private-public investments, support bottom-up strategies, and build 21st century infrastructure. The agency’s priorities align with Secretary Bryson’s vision for how the Department of Commerce can best partner with the business community to support the president’s jobs agenda and help American businesses “build it here and sell it everywhere.”
The president’s budget provides $220 million for EDA to drive 21st century development in a dynamic, cluster-based approach. These clusters of research, investors, and manufacturers have immense power to change America’s economic landscape.
Working with Commerce and the administration, EDA will continue to leverage multi-agency initiatives and partnerships with regions to foster economic and job growth and increase America’s global competitiveness.