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Textiles & Apparel – A Global Industry

December 10, 2015

Joshua Teitelbaum is ITA’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Textiles, Consumer Goods, and Materials.

With the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) eliminating more than 18,000 foreign taxes on Made-in-America exports, it’s no secret that the TPP will bring major opportunities for American manufacturers. This includes one of the most important U.S. export industries: Textiles and Apparel.

In fact, in 2014, the United States exported more than $8.5 billion globally in technical textiles, which are textile products used primarily for their performance qualities rather than their appearance. Technical textiles include seat belts, surgical gowns, and industrial filters, among many other items.

Under the TPP, Japan—which maintains duties on our technical textiles exports as high as 8.2 percent and is our fifth largest export market for these products—will eliminate nearly all of their duties on our technical textiles exports immediately. Eliminating these foreign taxes on U.S. products is how we boost U.S. manufacturing and support American textile workers.

In addition, by setting new, high-standard global trade rules, TPP puts American workers first. These high standards include the strongest enforceable labor standards of any trade agreement in history. The new agreement also supports U.S. manufacturing, especially by small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), by streamlining customs processes, facilitating greater transparency in rules, and preventing unfair competition from state-owned enterprises.

While 98 percent of U.S. exporters are small businesses, less than five percent of U.S. businesses sell their goods and services to markets overseas. Thankfully, the new agreement is an opportunity to boost exports and make it easier for more SMEs to do business abroad. For the first time in any trade agreement, TPP includes a dedicated chapter on small- and medium-sized businesses that focuses on how these companies can benefit from trade.

Recently, the Industry & Analysis division in the International Trade Administration produced a series of market assessment tools for U.S. exporters called Top Markets Reports. As we prepared these reports, our research revealed that competition in the global market for technical textiles is very strong. In the reports, some industry highlights for TPP partner countries include:

  • Canada continues to be an attractive export market for U.S.-made technical textiles, especially for companies that are new-to-export and/or new-to-market. The Canadian market is the second largest market for U.S. exports of textiles and apparel. Due to proximity, similar business cultures, and a high receptivity for U.S.-made products, there is a high volume of bilateral trade between the United States and Canada. 

    Similar to the United States, Canada has experienced an economic shift in its textile industry. This shift has moved away from manufacturing traditional high-volume commodity textile products to developing and manufacturing technical textiles.

  • Mexico is the United States’ largest market for textiles and apparel. The size of Mexico’s textile and apparel sector coupled with its proximity to the United States and the flexibilities afforded to U.S. exporters through NAFTA, ITA expects continued investment in all four technical textile sectors— non-woven, medical, protective, and specific/industrial —and continued growth into the future.
  • Vietnam’s textile and apparel industry is growing faster than that of many of its regional competitors. The Vietnamese textile industry has more than 3,800 companies. Foreign companies are starting to pour more money into Vietnam to take advantage of potential economic opportunities from future free trade agreements. Over the past several years, Vietnam’s textile and apparel industry has benefitted from increased foreign investment. Because of this consistent growth, U.S. companies will have the chance to increase their exports of technical textiles to more consumers and businesses in Vietnam.

To learn more about this growing industry, the impact TPP will have on it and how to take your business global, please contact one of our local offices.

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Secretary Penny Pritzker Invites Economic Development Organizations to Connect at Hannover Messe

December 9, 2015

Hannover Messe is the world’s largest trade show for industrial technology, and Secretary Penny Pritzker invites U.S. economic development organizations (EDOs) to participate in the 2016 Hannover Messe fair from April 25th – 29th in Hannover, Germany.

U.S. EDOs will have the opportunity to be front and center in the U.S. Investment Pavilion, a centerpiece of the trade show and host to special events with global technology and industry leaders from around the world.

There is no better opportunity for your EDO to connect to global investors looking to make deals and showcase yourself as a prime investment destination to more than 200,000 attendees.

 Register to learn how USA Partner Country status makes this a can’t-miss event for your organization!

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Hannover Messe 2016: The World’s Largest Industrial Trade Show and an Unprecedented Opportunity for Virginia Exporters

December 8, 2015

Joshua Kaplan is an International Trade Specialist in the Richmond, VA Export Assistance Center.

If your company is currently doing business internationally or would like to start exporting in 2016, and you are looking to sell goods and/or services to the industrial sector, there may be no better opportunity for your firm to meet potential partners and customers than at Hannover Messe next year.  This event, to be held in Germany from April 25-29, will bring more than 200,000 attendees from 70 countries, including more than 100 business delegations.

We will host a free webinar December 10 at 2:30pm to explain how this trade show could be the spark that ignites your export business to Europe and around the globe.

For the first time in the nearly 70-year history of this event, the United States has been awarded Partner Country status in 2016, which means more exposure and increased opportunity for Virginia companies that choose to exhibit in one of the industry-specific U.S. pavilions.  Virginia exhibitors will benefit from no-cost Commercial Service support offerings designed to maximize customer interaction before, during, and after the show, and will receive increased visibility from joining the U.S. Partner Country delegation (expected to number between 300-400).

Lastly, while there is no question that any international business development trip requires significant resources from your firm, Virginia firms may be eligible for substantial cost reimbursement related to exhibition and travel expenses associated with this event.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to participate in this event, please register your interest or simply contact your local U.S. Export Assistance Center or VEDP Trade Manager.  You may also sign up for the joint VEDP-Commercial Service webinar here.

 

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SelectUSA’s First-Ever Canada Conference – Greater Opportunity for the U.S.-Canada Commercial Relationship

December 7, 2015

 

This is a guest blog by Bruce Heyman, the U.S. Ambassador to Canada.

Trade and investment are a crucial part of the United States’ global agenda. That’s been one of President Obama’s core messages from the beginning of his time in office, and it’s been the driving force behind many of his major international initiatives. It’s why he, along with Secretary of State John Kerry and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, hosted the 2015 SelectUSA Investment Summit back in March.

Select USA

From l to r: U.S. Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman, Champion Pet Foods President & CEO Frank Burdzy, and SelectUSA Executive Director Vinai Thummalapally

It’s also why I was so pleased to play a role in the inaugural edition of the SelectUSA Canada Conference in Toronto, Ontario on November 17th. No two countries in the world share a larger or more extensive trade relationship than Canada and the United States. Canada is the fourth-leading origin of foreign direct investment (FDI) into the United States, so it was only natural to hold an investment facilitation event that brought U.S. economic development organizations (EDOs) together with Canadian companies of all sizes and backgrounds.

Having led the delegation of more than 80 Canadians representing the private sector, NGOs and government to SelectUSA’s Summit in Washington, I know first-hand how much excitement and interest Canadians have when it comes to cross-border trade and investment with the United States—not to mention how much that enthusiasm and interest is reciprocated by American EDOs! Even so, I was greatly impressed by the size of the response to our first SelectUSA Canada Conference. On the Canadian side, we had more than 50 companies, representing a broad range of industries and markets, while my fellow Americans proved to be equally excited by the prospect of linking up with potential investors, with 24 economic development agencies representing states, cities and regions in attendance.

While it’s always a great time to talk about expanding cross-border trade, the SelectUSA Canada Conference took place at a particularly exciting time in the U.S.-Canada relationship. For one thing, the event was held just a few weeks after the swearing in of a new government in Ottawa, which meant that there was lots of discussion about exploring new avenues for collaboration and cooperation.

From an even more global perspective, however, the SelectUSA Canada Conference took place just weeks after the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, and just a few weeks before the COP21 climate change meetings in Paris. While you may not immediately think of those two milestones as being connected, the reality is we must transition to a global clean energy economy. The TPP—with its strong environmental provisions and its inclusion countries representing approximately 40 percent of the world’s consumers—represents an incredible opportunity to do just that. I think our unprecedented bilateral relationship gives the United States and Canada an opportunity to be leaders in that transition to a clean energy economy, which makes events like the SelectUSA Canada Conference all the more important!

To underscore my belief in the importance of growing and expanding that relationship, I was pleased to use the conference as a platform to announce two exciting new cross-border investment initiatives. First, it was my pleasure to announce the establishment of the Ambassador’s Meritorious Investment Award, which will recognize Canadian companies that invest in the United States. We presented the first of these awards to Champion Petfoods, a Canadian pet food manufacturer that is getting ready to open its first U.S. pet food kitchen in Auburn, Kentucky — an investment they undertook following Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear’s 2013 trade mission to Canada!

Secondly, during my SelectUSA Canada Conference keynote speech, I was happy to announce a new public-private partnership called the Invest USA Committee. Based in Toronto, the committee will bring together key players to promote and facilitate Canadian investment in the United States. They’ll do so through educational programs, promotional events, business matchmaking, and assistance to Canadian investors.

It’s an exciting time in the U.S.-Canada relationship, full of lots of incredible opportunities for growth, investment, innovation and expansion. SelectUSA Canada represents just one avenue for those opportunities to take shape. It’s my sincere hope that all of us in U.S. Mission Canada can play a major role in that, and it’s why my commercial team across Canada is ready, willing and able to assist anyone looking to create or expand their cross-border trade with us. To find out where to get started, please visit BuyUSA.gov/Canada!

 

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The Industrial Global Village Meets in Hanover

December 3, 2015

This post originally appeared on Phoenix Contact.  Jack Nehlig is President of Phoenix Contact USA

The industrial global village has its city center, and it’s in Hanover, Germany. Each year more than 250,000 of the world’s brightest technical talents gather at Hanover Messe to advance the art of worldwide manufacturing. And you should be there too!

As the U.S. leader of Phoenix Contact, I have learned firsthand the value of an annual pilgrimage to Hannover Messe each April. And because of its importance to the manufacturing world, we annually host a select group of our customers and distributors to share the excitement that the Hannover Messe experience provides. So in the spirit of sharing, here are my five reasons an American manufacturing engineer, manager or executive ought to attend Hannover Messe:

  1. ONE-STOP SHOP!

It truly is a global gathering of the world’s manufacturing industry. Nowhere else can you experience such a comprehensive display of companies in one place. And this is no slimmed-down U.S. tradeshow. The companies that exhibit have expansive booths with in-depth product displays, and are staffed by their best and brightest.

  1. IT’S A MANUFACTURING INNOVATION FASHION SHOW!

Just as Paris is the place where the trendiest clothing fashions debut each year, Hannover Messe is where the industrial world puts its latest fashions on display. It’s no secret that Germany is a world leader in manufacturing technology, so there’s no better place to hold a manufacturing innovation fashion show. Companies take great pride in displaying their “Next Big Things” for the first time, and actively compete for the Hermes Award, given to the best innovations of the year.

  1. CONNECTIONS FOR EXPORT!

This is a great benefit for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with limited resources. Since Hannover Messe is a global gathering, it is easy to make connections with like-minded companies and channel partners looking for expansion. And it is not just EU connections; people from Asia and Latin America flock to the show as well.

  1. LEARNING!

While you can certainly learn about new products through firsthand visits to the thousands of exhibitors’ booths, you can also attend many educational events focused on the newest industry trends. Of course this year, the hot topics of Industrie 4.0, and the Industrial Internet of Things, will be on full display. So confirm a hunch, learn more about a technology, or simply scout out your competition! Nothing beats firsthand interactive learning.

  1. THE ENERGY!

It only takes once and you’re hooked! Each year I attend the fair and come home excited about being in a technology career, and excited about the future of manufacturing. The icing on the cake is that Germany is a beautiful country, and the people of Germany are gracious hosts! And did I mention the best beer in the world??!!!

So I hope these reasons have been enough to convince you to attend Hanover Messe this year. But there is one more for 2016! The U.S. is going to be the Partner Country, which means special attention will be given to American industry trends and the re-emerging manufacturing environment in the U.S.

And a last bit of advice… book your tickets and hotels early. The most convenient accommodations go fast, so if I’ve convinced you, act now!

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U.S. Remains No. 1 Choice for Foreign Investment – New Stats Released

December 3, 2015

This is a guest blog by Vinai Thummalapally, Executive Director of SelectUSA.

On Monday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released highly-anticipated data highlighting new foreign direct investment (FDI) expenditures in the United States.

These statistics capture the story of new FDI into the United States in 2014 and introduce a perspective on FDI never before seen in official BEA statistics. Highlighting data like this is not only part of SelectUSA’s mission to facilitate and promote FDI into the United States but it also gives our business and policy leaders a quantitative look at how the United States maintains its title as the number one destination for FDI.

In the new set of data, BEA produced statistics that specify two types of new FDI: acquisitions and greenfield investments. Greenfield investments capture how much foreign investors are spending to establish and/or expand U.S. businesses. Last year, new FDI expenditures made by foreign investors acquiring, establishing, and expanding U.S. businesses totaled $241.3 billion while greenfield investments accounted for seven percent of that total, exceeding $16.5 billion. Acquisitions accounted for the majority of new investment expenditure, totaling $224.7 billion in 2014.

The new data helps build a narrative around specific industries and geographies of interest. For example, greenfield FDI in manufacturing was very strong, with expenditures totaling over $2.8 billion. These expenditures were second only to greenfield FDI in the real estate industry in 2014.

Looking forward, this data also shows statistics that capture planned greenfield investment for FDI projects that may continue into the future. These investments in U.S. manufacturing sector industries total $9.3 billion, more than three times the total amount invested in 2014. We also see that the U.S. manufacturing industry dominates new FDI investment: almost 60 percent of new foreign investor expenditures – $139.1 billion – went to manufacturing, a fact that echoes and reinforces the growing “manufacturing renaissance” here in the United States.

BEA’s comprehensive snapshot of new FDI is an excellent tool for economic developers, investors, and policymakers. This snapshot enhances our understanding of how FDI is interwoven into the U.S. economy. According to latest available 2013 figures, majority foreign-owned U.S. affiliates employed 6.1 million U.S. workers with an average annual wage of $79,979 and accounted for nearly 23 percent of all U.S. goods exports. Reports like these reaffirm the United States’ place as the number one destination for foreign direct investment in the global, interconnected, and competitive economy of the 21st century.

 

 

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Five Things Entrepreneurs Should Know About Export Controls

December 2, 2015

This post originally appeared on the Department of Commerce blog.

The U.S. Commercial Service is having a Export Control Seminar in Salt Lake City, Utah on December 10, 2015. Learn more and register today.

A few weeks ago, Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker addressed more than 1100 industry representatives during the Bureau of Industry and Security’s (BIS) annual conference to discuss export control policies and highlight how, BIS has an enormous impact on the nation’s safety and competitiveness.

Secretary of Commerce

Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker Addresses the 2015 BIS Annual Update Conference

As National Entrepreneurship Month comes to an end, we will continue to celebrate American innovation. Entrepreneurs launching new businesses or looking to export can look to BIS as a resource and learn how export control laws may be relevant to their operations.

Export controls help protect U.S. national security and foreign policy, and address proliferation concerns. By administering and enforcing export controls, BIS seeks to keep some of the most sensitive goods and technologies out of the most dangerous hands.  BIS requires businesses to submit license applications for certain exports, and enforces the law against those who do not get required licenses. An export license grants permission to conduct a specified export transaction–to ship an item or to release software source code or technology. BIS then issues licenses after a careful review of the facts, and with input from other U.S. government agencies, including the State and Defense Departments.

The key issues involved in the review of a license, or whether a license is required include: What you are exporting, how the item will be used, as well as where and who the ultimate recipient will be. Although many items are not affected by export controls, high technology items and items destined for sanctioned countries, persons, or entities will often require a license from BIS; this includes commercial as well as some military items.

Here are the top five things entrepreneurs should know about export controls:

  1. BIS offers services for understanding export controls.  BIS offers a variety of services to help you comply, including live seminars, an online training room, and regularly scheduled conference calls on export control regulatory changes and Cuba updates.  We also offer consultations with export counselors who are also available by phone at (202) 482–4811, or (949) 660–0144 for our West Coast office.
  2. Export controls affect high tech industries, including items for commercial as well as military use. There is a misconception that export controls only affect military use items.  Export controls also apply to sensitive or high technology commercial items. Examples include high-end machine tools and semiconductors, encryption software, night vision camera equipment, and technology for unmanned aerial systems.  These and other items may require a license prior to shipment or transmission out of the United States.
  3. Exports to certain countries may be uniquely affected by export controls. Sanctions and other regulations can impose special restrictions that affect the export of many items—including “low tech” items in some cases—to particular destinations. BIS has a role in administering economic sanctions on countries such as Cuba, Russia, and Iran, among others. Exports destined for sanctioned countries will often require a license before they are exported, even if the items are not high tech.
  4. Export controls may affect companies and research institutions who employ foreign nationals or who collaborate with foreign nationals on research, even within the United States.  A “deemed export” is the release of technology or source code to a foreign national in the United States.  This is because our export control regulations treat such a release of controlled technology as an export to the individual’s home country.  Therefore, a license may be required before you release controlled technology to a foreign national who does not hold a U.S. green card.
  5. There are exceptions.  Even if your export would otherwise require a license under our regulations, it may qualify for a “license exception.”  A license exception is an authorization that may allow you to export or reexport, under stated conditions, some items that would otherwise require a license.  Four of our most common exceptions include allowing for replacement parts (License Exception RPL), shipments to certain government end-users (GOV), temporary exports (such as for exhibition, for tools of trade, or for repairs abroad) (TMP), and limited value shipments (LVS).  In addition, in 2011, BIS added a new license exception called Strategic Trade Authorization (STA).  STA facilitates trade with a list of 36 allied countries, and includes deemed exports to nationals of such countries.

For more information, please visit the BIS website at www.bis.doc.gov or follow us on Twitter @BISgov.

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