Skip to comments.New World Trade Center's Chinese Glass Is Adding to Trade Furor
Posted on 10/11/2009 9:37:58 AM PDT by BGHater
The new World Trade Center, now under construction, is often considered a symbol of American enterprise. But to some union members and U.S. businesses, it represents what's wrong with the nation's economy.
The contract to manufacture the blast-resistant glass wrapping the main tower's first 20 stories was awarded earlier this year to a Chinese firm that underbid U.S. competitors.
Now the trade tensions between the United States and China that have arisen recently over tires, steel and paper are spreading to glass.
"This new tower is going to be made out of subsidized Chinese glass, putting factory workers out of their jobs in America," said Scott Paul, director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, a partnership of the United Steelworkers and some manufacturers.
On Thursday, the Alliance sent a letter to U.S. trade officials asking that they address what they see as unfair trade practices. Specifically, the group says that the Chinese government spends billions of dollars subsidizing the glass industry's energy costs.
"Our domestic glass industry is the most efficient in the world, but it cannot compete against production that is heavily subsidized by the Chinese government," according to the letter. "As a result, glass production in the U.S. has suffered in recent years, with plant closings and thousands of lost jobs throughout the country."
U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke are slated for trade meetings in Hangzhou, China, later this month.
A Chinese spokesman on trade issues did not respond to requests for comment.
The U.S. glass industry has lost more than 40,000 jobs since 2000, according to Department of Labor figures, even as the Chinese glass industry has experienced explosive growth. Between 2000 and 2008, U.S. imports of Chinese glass have tripled.
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Buy American! Jobs for Americans!
That phrase carries with it an exclusion for me: Non-Union American Made.
Does America make anything anymore, besides financial bubbles, hot air and hype?
To rebuild on THAT SITE, it should be a NO BRAINER that SUPPLIERS and LABOR be USA companies ONLY!
i.e. bogged down for 8 years by idiot lawyers, politicians, and unions.
Yeah, that sounds about right.
The Empire State Building was constructed in 410 days, start to finish. What will it take to get America moving again?
It's taken years to get going, having been hung up in politics and bureaucracy, and now it's dependent on glass from communist china. Yep, I'd say that about sums up "American enterprise" in the age of Obama. At least he didn't nationalize the glass factories.
great minds, etc...
It is being built on a different site. The memorial is being built on the original site.
Yeah, your right. I’m still in awe at how fast they built The Pentagon.
I agree, but the non-union exemption still holds. I’ll support unions when you can tell me where Jimmy Hoffa is buried.
I support non-union manufacturing - will buy from them before anyone else. Regardless, I’ll bet you a dollar to a dime, this glass thing with the new tower(s) is union prompted. In which case, they can suck it.
“We made the samples for our bid (PPG) here in Carlisle, PA. Our product was far superior. Prices were similar contrary to what is reported.”
What a shame that your company didn’t get the contract. I think about the great pride your company and the members of your community would have long had when seeing the final product built and inhabited.
It is possible that this will play out many, many times in the future, in view of the fact that China is now our banker and that fact carries with it enormous power.
When all is said and done, it would be interesting to find out if the final payments made for the glass really do tally up to less than what your company bid. I doubt it will be less, but no one will ever be able to really find out.