Subcommittee Working to Increase Global Investment in the United States

April 18, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC – The Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade Subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE), today held a hearing to examine the Global Investment in American Jobs Act of 2013. Chairman Terry put forward this draft legislation to help increase foreign direct investment in the United States and spur job creation.  

The panel heard from expert witnesses who explained the benefits of foreign direct investment to our economy and discussed how this legislation could help encourage investment and job growth. The United States remains a global economic leader, but our nation’s share of foreign direct investment has declined in recent years. The Global Investment in American Jobs Act of 2013 seeks to reverse this trend, calling on the Secretary of Commerce to lead an interagency review and report to Congress on ways to make the United States more competitive in attracting investment.

“The United States cannot rest on its laurels. We need to take a hard look at some of our national policies and assess whether they are stunting our ability to attract companies to the U.S. that have proven they create jobs and help grow our economy. The legislation that I will be introducing in the following days, the Global Investment in American Jobs Act of 2013, is the first step in this process,” said Chairman Terry.

Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sanchez described the importance of foreign direct investment to the U.S. economy, stating, “Direct investment in the United States leads to economic growth and job creation. In 2010, U.S. affiliates of foreign firms employed over 5.3 million U.S. workers with average compensation of over $77,000 per year. Those firms were responsible for tens of billions of dollars of research and development ($41.3 billion) and spending on fixed assets like manufacturing plants and equipment ($149 billion)… In 2012 alone, nearly $168 billion in FDI flowed into the United States.” He also called for a proactive strategy to help retain our global leadership position, “As the competition for cross-border investment increases, the United States needs to proactively protect its leadership position and ensure that it remains a destination of choice for firms worldwide.”

Nancy McLernon, President & CEO of the Organization for International Investment, praised the draft legislation as a solution to help attract and retain foreign direct investment. “This legislation recognizes that the United States cannot compete for 21st century investment with a 20th century policy mindset. It aims to equip policymakers with a forward-thinking, strategic approach to capture new investment in this increasingly competitive – yet opportunity-rich – global environment,” said McLernon, “If enacted, OFII believes this legislation will send a powerful message at home and abroad that the United States is working to elevate its competitiveness for FDI in a thoughtful and bipartisan manner.”

The National Association of Manufactures also endorsed the legislation as an important step toward increasing the United States’ global market share. Linda Dempsey, Vice President for International and Economic Affairs at NAM, stated, “The Global Investment in American Jobs Act highlights the need to do more to attract foreign investment in the United States, requiring an interagency review of policies and best practices and a report on U.S. policies, with recommendations for further action. This review, as well as the report, would be beneficial for policymakers.”

Chairman Terry added, “If my legislation, the Global Investment in American Jobs Act of 2013, can succeed at highlighting what the U.S. needs to do to keep attracting more great companies to our shores, then it is a win-win for every American and worker.”

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