U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) met today with Ohio members of the International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) to discuss the record year for America’s automobile industry and how the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could harm that progress. Yesterday, Brown issued a statement on Ford’s plans to leave Japan citing TPP’s lack of enforceable currency provisions.
“The record year for American auto sales speaks to the tenacity of Ohio’s auto workers,” said Brown. “At plants throughout our state, these men and women work hard to support this industry and provide for their families. Meeting our auto workers is an opportunity to thank them for their dedication and learn about their challenges on the job. They can compete with anyone in the world, but they deserve a level playing field. That’s why I’ve fought for fair trade that boosts our manufacturing sector and ensures the U.S. has equal footing with our trade partners.”
As the U.S. and 11 other countries negotiated the TPP, Brown was an outspoken advocate for a strong auto chapter that would level the playing field for U.S. automobile manufacturers and workers. Brown wrote to U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Michael Froman and U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew in September urging them to address currency manipulation in the TPP.
In September, Brown also penned a letter urging Ambassador Froman to negotiate an agreement that holds Japan to its commitment to phase out its tariffs in accordance with the longest staging period, use NAFTA-based rules of origin as a basis for TPP, and include provisions to remove non-tariff barriers, including currency manipulation.
Brown also wrote to Froman in December 2014 highlighting the impact of TPP on the auto industry and outlining similar concerns over tariffs, rules of origin, and currency.