WASHINGTON, DC, MARCH 25, 2008—A new analysis by the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) found that the U.S. trade deficit with China has taken a surprising toll on Pennsylvania workers. Annual job losses in Pennsylvania due to trade with China average three times higher than losses discussed by some of the presidential candidates and attributed to NAFTA.
“In just a few short years, tens of thousands of Pennsylvania jobs have been shipped to China,” said AAM Director Scott Paul. “The presidential candidates are rightly concerned about the potentially damaging effects of unfair trade and they need to focus more attention on our record trade deficits with China, which have cost us more than 1.8 million jobs since 2001. Vigorous enforcement of our trade laws will ensure American workers and companies have the chance to compete in a fair global market. We call on the presidential candidates to make this commitment to the voters of Pennsylvania.”
AAM’s analysis of Economic Policy Institute data found that Pennsylvania lost 78,200 jobs from 2001-2006 (all sectors) as a result of the U.S. trade deficit with China [source: EPI, ‘Costly Trade with China’]. That works out to an average of 15,640 lost jobs per year. Using an identical analysis, AAM found that Pennsylvania lost 44,173 jobs from 1993-2004 (all sectors) as a result of NAFTA, for an average of 4,016 jobs lost per year [source: EPI, ‘Revisiting NAFTA’].
PENNSYLVANIA JOB LOSS
Due to CHINA 78,200 2001-2006
Due to NAFTA 44,173 1993-2004
“China cheats and Pennsylvania loses,” said Paul, noting that the U.S. racked up record annual trade deficits in 2007 with both China ($256 billion) and its NAFTA partners ($138 billion). “If the presidential candidates want to save Pennsylvania jobs, they should commit to fighting China’s illegal trade practices such as dumping, subsidies, and currency manipulation.”
AAM advocates strong enforcement of existing U.S. trade law in order to address predatory foreign practices like China’s dumping, subsidies, and illegal currency manipulation. An AAM study in 2007 found that when U.S. trade laws are actually enforced, the net contribution to the U.S. economy is 50 times greater than any consumer benefits derived from dumped or subsidized imports [source: ‘Enforcing the Rules,’ www.americanmanufacturing.org].