Archive for the ‘Manufacturing’ Category


Open for Business: Strengthening U.S. Manufacturing and Increasing Investment in the United States

October 6, 2015

This post originally appeared on the Department of Commerce blog

Post by Penny Pritzker Secretary of Commerce

The United States is the world’s best place to do business. Our country is home to a skilled and productive workforce, unmatched institutions of higher education, strong intellectual property protections, a commitment to innovation, an abundant and stable energy supply, and access to millions of global consumers through high-quality free trade agreements. For these reasons and more, CEOs from around the world have ranked the U.S. as the number one place to invest for three years in a row.

Save the date

The U.S. Department of Commerce will host the third SelectUSA Investment Summit on June 19-21, 2016 at the Washington Hilton in Washington, DC. For more information, please visit

In 2015, we welcomed investments from businesses of all sizes, from budding entrepreneurs to major multinationals like Nissan, ABB Group, Novo Nordisk, and Daimler Chrysler.  These companies can choose to operate anywhere, but they chose the United States.  We remain home to more foreign direct investment (FDI) than any other country in the world.

FDI generates growth and creates jobs in many sectors of the American economy, including manufacturing. U.S. manufacturing is in the midst a real comeback, with companies adding nearly 900,000 manufacturing jobs since February 2010 and new factories opening their doors at the fastest rate in decades. Our most recent data demonstrates that foreign investors have played a critical role in this growth. FDI in the U.S. manufacturing sector reached $1.05 trillion (2014) and supports 2.2 million jobs (2012).  Furthermore, U.S. affiliates of international companies spend $48 billion annually on research and development, which drives both innovation and exports.

On Friday, we celebrated Manufacturing Day, but year-round, this Administration is focused on what it takes to keep American manufacturing strong, to attract job-creating global investment, and to build a competitive 21st century economy.

I am excited to announce that the U.S. Department of Commerce will host the third SelectUSA Investment Summit on June 19-21, 2016 at the Washington Hilton in Washington, DC.

Established by President Obama in 2011, SelectUSA promotes and facilitates business investment by working with companies that want to establish U.S. operations and by partnering with U.S. economic development organizations to attract them. In the past four years, SelectUSA has assisted in winning over $17 billion of deals across the country.

The SelectUSA Investment Summit, the initiative’s showcase event, is the premier venue for international investors of all sizes to find the right place, with the people, resources, and market they need to be successful. At the last Summit, investors from over 70 foreign markets and economic development representatives from all 50 U.S. states joined President Obama, six Cabinet Secretaries, three Governors, and dozens of leading CEOs from major international firms and SMEs to learn more about the U.S. investment climate and opportunities for investment.

To learn more, I hope you will consider joining us at the 2016 SelectUSA Investment Summit. Please sign up for the SelectUSA email list by visiting, and you will be the first to know when registration goes live.


Inspiring the Next Generation of Manufacturers

October 2, 2015

This post originally appeared on the Department of Commerce blog. This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

Chandra Brown is  Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing

This is my favorite time of year, when we recognize the importance of Manufacturing as thousands of companies open their doors to welcome in the public to see the amazing  products  being  made every day by our neighbors and friends in communities across the United States. Manufacturing Day is October 2, 2015 and I am excited to be one of the many Americans who will spend the day touring some of the best manufacturing facilities in the world.

Info-graphic on MFG Day

Celebrating the backbone of America

There are currently over 12 million Americans producing the most innovative and advanced products  in today’s marketplace and this is a time to showcase their inventive  talents, as well as, inspire the next generation of manufacturers.  Many companies will be  hosting  students of all ages so they can see for themselves the creativity that goes into producing everything from boats, to medical devices, to semiconductors in order to show that the manufacturing sector offers new and exciting career opportunities.

For every $1 in goods produced, the manufacturing industry returns $1.37 to the economy.  U.S. manufacturing industry is the 8th largest economy in the world.  I have the great privilege of traveling the world promoting U.S. manufactured products and with 95% of the world living outside our borders, I am also excited to see so many of our products made here and shipped everywhere, to countries all around the world, contributing not only to the world economy, but to the health and productivity of citizens everywhere.

In addition, manufacturing is the basis of a vibrant middle class. While manufacturing jobs continue to be high paying jobs, we are facing an upcoming shortage of skilled workers as 84% of manufacturers report a moderate to severe shortage of available, qualified workers. A recent Deloitte and Manufacturing Institute study estimates that by 2025, there will be 2 million jobs available in the U.S. Manufacturing sector.  Manufacturing Day was created to help call attention to the importance and critical nature of a maintaining a healthy manufacturing workforce.  We have always been a nation of   makers and we will continue leading the world as the best place to manufacture the most innovative and highest quality products, built by the best workers.

I encourage everyone to mark their calendar and use Manufacturing Day to tour one of your local manufacturers to see for yourself the unique products that are being made in your community. Thousands of open houses are listed on Manufacturing is truly our future and we can all be a part of it.


HANNOVER MESSE 2016: One Place to Showcase the Many Reasons Behind U.S. Global Business Leadership

September 1, 2015

Antwaun Griffin is the International Trade Administration’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for U.S. Operations.

There’s no one reason to explain why global consumers actively seek out U.S. goods and services, and no single explanation why global investors call the United States the best place in the world to invest.

Select USA

Hannover Messe is April 25-29 in Germany. Join leading industry experts & witness innovative technologies from across the globe.

A variety of factors keep American companies at the forefront of innovation, on top of advanced manufacturing, research, technology, and education. A stable currency, an educated workforce, and an enormous consumer base – among other factors – maintain our top investment climate.

And while there’s no one reason to explain why the United States leads the way in these areas, there is one place American companies and economic development organizations (EDOs) can show our leadership: HANNOVER MESSE 2016.

Partner Country USA: An Unequaled Advantage for Companies
and EDOs

Global businesses and learn-hannover_originalinvestors have recognized HANNOVER MESSE as a top trade and investment show for decades, but with the United States as the event Partner Country for the first time in history, there is more opportunity for U.S. companies, EDOs, and the nation as a whole to showcase itself as the global business leader.

I want to invite you to be a part of it, joining HANNOVER MESSE as an exhibitor in a U.S. Pavilion.Companies and EDOs that participate as U.S. exhibitors will find unequaled advantage by participating in the U.S. Pavilions:

  • Connect directly to more than 200,000 attendees, including global investors, buyers, distributors, resellers, and members of the business media.
  • Reach a global audience that comes from more than 70 countries.
  • Network with more than 100 business delegations that come to the event ready to make business deals.
  • Connect across industry sectors from energy, industrial automation, digital factory, industrial supply, and research technology.
  • Take advantage of support from the U.S. Commercial Service and SelectUSA including personalized, 1-on-1 counseling tailored to your needs.

It is rare that any company or EDO would get the opportunity to exhibit products, services or investment opportunities to such a large audience, and with the added exposure from the U.S. Pavilion, this event is a can’t-miss opportunity.

I hope you’ll add HANNOVER MESSE to your global strategy in 2016, and please feel free to contact us with questions at


Dow Chemical Invests in Employees and the U.S.

April 15, 2015

This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

This is a guest blog post by Deborah Borg, president of Dow USA.

Deborah Borg (center), president of Dow USA, with Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Analysis Marcus Jadotte (left) and  Dow's St. Charles Operations site director Johnny Chavez at the Dow Louisiana St. Charles Operation site.

Deborah Borg (center), president of Dow USA, with Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Analysis Marcus Jadotte (left) and Dow’s St. Charles Operations site director Johnny Chavez at the Dow Louisiana St. Charles Operation site.

In 1897, when The Dow Chemical Company first opened its doors in Michigan, our founder most likely wouldn’t have known that more than a century later, Dow would be one of the world’s largest chemical manufacturers. Today, we employ more than 24,000 employees at 73 sites across the United States. These employees manufacture approximately 14,000 unique products that are exported to more than 120 countries across the globe.

On Thursday, I joined U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Analysis Marcus Jadotte at our Dow Louisiana St. Charles Operations site, located on the Mississippi, just up the river from New Orleans. The Assistant Secretary along with Johnny Chavez, the St. Charles Operations site director, and I met with Dow employees to discuss the role trade has played in helping Dow grow, innovate, and support our U.S. workforce. We also talked about global competitiveness and the need for a level playing field around the world—now and in the future.

In my role as president of Dow USA, our growth strategy is my number one priority. When I think about how Dow can continue to build on its previous success, I think about two things: our investments and the need to grow and cultivate our customer base. The United States is home to 56 percent of Dow’s global manufacturing operations. We have a very strong domestic customer base, but much of our future customer base lies outside U.S. borders. In fact, 95 percent of the world’s population and 80 percent of its purchasing power are outside of the United States. Having access to customers in these markets is key for our continued business growth.

When it comes to resources, Dow is aggressively investing right here in the United States. The most recent example is our $6 billion investment in the Gulf Coast, which will yield new production facilities and new jobs in Louisiana and Texas. It also means stronger economies for those states and the United States as a whole.

Although we can control where and how much to invest, Dow has less control over increasing our access to global consumers through new trade agreements. That responsibility falls to Congress and the president. President Obama has been working hard to negotiate new trade agreements with the Asia-Pacific region and Europe that would lower or eliminate barriers to export for Dow products and the products of thousands of other U.S. businesses both large and small.

We’re encouraged by the efforts of the president and the support of the Commerce Department in highlighting the benefits of trade. Global customers are critical to Dow’s continued growth, and new trade agreements hold the promise for Dow to succeed for another century. At Dow, we have been working to generate support in Congress for Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) legislation. With TPA, the United States has a stronger hand at the negotiating table to bring home trade deals that will benefit American companies and workers.


North Carolina Attracts FDI in Manufacturing and Textiles

March 13, 2015

This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

Stefan M. Selig is the Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade

Under Secretary Stefan Selig (seond from left) participates in a ribbon cutting ceremony with North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory (left) PEDS Legwear President and CEO Michael Penner and Walmart Vice President of U.S. Manufacturing Cindi Marsiglio.

Under Secretary Stefan Selig (seond from left) participates in a ribbon cutting ceremony with North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory (left) PEDS Legwear President and CEO Michael Penner and Walmart Vice President of U.S. Manufacturing Cindi Marsiglio.

On Wednesday afternoon, I delivered remarks in Hilderbran, North Carolina at a ribbon-cutting ceremony where we officially opened the new Canadian-based Peds® Legwear (PEDS) production facility. PEDS’ recent $16 million investment in the plant and new machinery has allowed the company to hire North Carolina factory workers who were previously laid off. By 2018, this new facility will bring more than 200 jobs to Hildebran, providing a lift to the local economy.

SelectUSA, our program to attract foreign direct investment (FDI), along with our Commercial Service Canada team, helped facilitate this deal. SelectUSA provided counseling to PEDS on how to navigate the federal regulatory process and also helped identify sources of federal funding. In addition to PEDS’ investment in the Hildebran facility, the company plans an additional $8 million venture, bringing their total investment in the United States to $24 million. In less than two weeks, similar FDI deals will be highlighted at this year’s SelectUSA Investment Summit, which will take place March 23-24.

In addition to ITA’s support, PEDS’ new investment is made possible because of a multi-year purchase order contract from Wal-Mart as part of the retailer’s commitment to buy domestically produced goods.

As I noted in my remarks—before an audience that included Michael Penner, president and CEO of Peds® Legwear; Cindi Marsiglio, Wal-Mart’s vice president of U.S. manufacturing; and North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory—PEDS’ investment in the facility shows our nation’s prowess to attract FDI.

Because the United States offers a transparent, fair, and stable business climate, as well as our second-to-none workforce, many global companies like PEDS are beginning to establish or expand operations here. In fact, in 2013, U.S. FDI inflows totaled $231 billion, of which $51 million was invested in U.S. textile and apparel manufacturing. In 2012, majority-owned U.S. affiliates of foreign firms accounted for $48 billion in R&D expenditures, exported $334 billion worth of U.S. goods exports, and employed nearly 6 million workers.

To keep the momentum, ITA will continue to develop opportunities for U.S. workers and businesses by promoting international trade, encouraging FDI, and working to foster a level playing field for American products and services.


U.S. Manufacturing Attracts Foreign Investment

January 29, 2015

This post originally appeared on the Department of Commerce blog.

This post contains external links. Please review our external linking policy.

By Mark Schmit, National Accounts Manager, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership

U.S. Manufacturing Attracts Foreign InvestmentThe United States is an attractive destination for foreign investment dollars for a variety of reasons, including a large economy with diverse consumer markets, a skilled labor force (thanks to community colleges with skill-development missions as well as research universities) and a predictable and stable regulatory system. These reasons and more explain why the U.S. has been the world’s largest recipient of foreign direct investment (FDI) since 2006 according to an October 2013 White House report, Foreign Direct Investment in the U.S.

Working for NIST’s Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), I wasn’t surprised to learn that the manufacturing industry is the largest beneficiary of FDI in the United States, accounting for more than one-third of that investment, according to data from the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis. “Made in America” is, after all, a de facto stamp of approval the world over. We are a manufacturer’s dream!

And investments in manufacturing have powerful multiplier effects on the U.S. economy. Every $1 spent in manufacturing generates $1.35 in additional economic activity. Since 1988, MEP has been committed to strengthening U.S. manufacturing and individual manufacturers, contributing to the growth of well-paying jobs, the development of dynamic manufacturing communities, and the enhancement of American innovation and global competitiveness.

MEP delivers its own high return on investment to taxpayers. For every dollar of federal investment, MEP clients generate nearly $19 in new sales, which translates into $2.5 billion annually. Last year, MEP centers served more than 30,000 manufacturing clients—a subset of which are foreign-owned. For example, since 2012, MEP centers worked on 900 projects with 322 manufacturers in the U.S. that have ownership ties to other countries. These projects helped those companies create and retain more than $700 million dollars in sales, save about $77 million and create or retain more than 6,000 U.S. jobs.

Looking beyond the statistics, we find many interesting success stories that illustrate how MEP centers across the country help make the most of foreign investment in U.S. manufacturing.

  • Pasta Montanais a contract manufacturer that uses durum semolina to craft specialty pasta. About 40 percent of the 100-employee, 24-7 operation’s business goes to the Japanese market, and it sells to other countries as well. When a key customer asked the company to certify its products to the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), Pasta Montana called Montana MEP affiliate MMEC to help prepare for the GFSI audit—which they did in less than four months. The successful effort helped the company retain millions of dollars in sales (about 15 percent of its business), and achieve 3 to 5 percent growth through new business opportunities.
  • Eagle Bend Manufacturing, Inc., manufactures automotive parts for cars and light weight trucks worldwide. A division of Magna International, Inc., of Canada, Eagle Bend has been in Clinton, Tenn., for more than 25 years and employs more than 450 workers. When the increasing number and volume of parts the company made started to create inefficiencies, Eagle Bend turned toTennessee MEPfor help optimizing both its product flow and use of space. This resulted in projected benefits that will top $2 million annually and a $64 million dollar facility expansion that will create 188 jobs over the next five years and add 100,000 square feet of floor space.
  • With more than a century of design and manufacturing experience, RECARO Aircraft SeatingAmericas Inc. is a global supplier of premium aircraft seats for leading airlines around the world. Based in Schwäbisch Hall, Germany, the company employs more than 1,600 worldwide including 350 at its facility in Fort Worth, Tex. To meet growing demand, the company partnered with TMAC, the Texas MEP affiliate, on a series of operational excellence initiatives. As a result of that investment, RECARE has seen a 15 percent increase in production, 38 percent increase in on-time delivery, and an 86 percent improvement in the time needed to retrieve parts.
  • Igus Bearings, Inc., is a global company with headquarters in Germany and a new, 162,000- square-foot factory and office facility in East Providence, R.I. Igus has served the North American market for almost 30 years, making polymer bearings and chains that are sold across many industries, including agriculture, construction and automotive. The economic downturn of 2008 changed business operations for Igus, as smaller orders replaced the large orders it was efficiently fulfilling. The ability to handle any order of any size was key to survival against larger (but slower) competitors. Providence-based Polaris MEPhelped Igus implement lean practices, leading to 50 percent fewer customer complaints and faster shipping times—96 percent of orders now ship within 24 hours.

We should see even more of these success stories thanks to high investor confidence in the strength of the U.S. economic recovery. For the second year in a row, the U.S. topped A.T. Kearney’s 2014 Foreign Direct Investment Confidence Index, a survey of 300 companies worldwide. The U.S. is not only the most likely destination for FDI, but never in the 16-year history of this index has a country had such a positive net position. Foreign investment is clearly good for foreign investors, U.S. manufacturers and the communities they support.


Celebrating One of Florida’s and the Nation’s Key Industries on Manufacturing Day

October 3, 2014

Chandra Brown is the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing. 

A manufacturing worker works on an automobile engine.

Manufacturing supports 17.4 million U.S. jobs.

Happy Manufacturing Day!

There are more than 1,500 Manufacturing Day events taking place across the country today, highlighting the importance of the manufacturing industry to the U.S. economy, American jobs, and to global innovation.

I am in Tampa, Florida, to tour three manufacturing facilities and meet the local manufacturing community.

I will visit these businesses today with Sandra Campbell of Tampa’s Export Assistance Center, and we’ll join students, teachers, parents, job seekers and other local community members at open houses designed to showcase the innovation taking place in modern manufacturing and the professional opportunities that are available in the industry.

Touring manufacturing facilities, discovering their amazing abilities, and meeting the next generation of manufacturers are always the best parts of my job!

Today we’ll be visiting:

  • Microlumen is a major producer of surgical quality heart tubing and a major exporter:
  • Southern Manufacturing Technologies is a leader in precision machined components and assemblies primarily for the aviation and aerospace industry:
  • Lockheed Martin (Tampa Bay plant) specializes in metal forming, fabrication and assembly of components for many of the company’s major programs:

I’m especially looking forward to meeting with the local high school students to discuss the rewarding and challenging careers that manufacturing has to offer.

A few facts to remember on this important day:

  • Manufacturing supports 17.4 million U.S. jobs.
  • Manufacturing career opportunities include engineers, designers, machinists, and computer programmers.
  • The annual average salary of manufacturing workers is more than $77,000, which is approximately 17 percent more than similar workers employed in other sectors.
  • For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, the sector creates $1.32 for the U.S. economy.

If you’re not in Tampa Bay, there are plenty of other opportunities for you to connect to your local manufacturing community, and I hope you’ll do so today.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 576 other followers