It would be a stretch to insinuate that outsourcing of all manner of work outside the US is subsiding substantially. In this warming political season the topic of American jobs and what is happening to them is getting the expected spin and this week the White House took its turn on the wheel saying that the growing trend is US companies are indeed keeping more jobs here rather than sending them abroad.
In addition, at the White House's "Insourcing American Jobs Forum" hosted by President Barack Obama, the president said in the next few weeks his administration would announce proposals to encourage further job creation at home with a number of tax incentives to invest in US employment as well as to eliminate tax breaks for those companies who move jobs overseas - a long touted but never passed proposal.
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Beyond any new laws, what is sparking the insourcing sentiment? During the forum, the White House released a report, "Investing in America: Building an Economy That Lasts" that pointed out a number of insourcing trends:
Each of those facts is evidence of a growing trend of insourcing, the White House concluded.
The Huffington Post meanwhile made a list of five things the President should highlight in the upcoming State of the Union speech to ensure that it called the "the significant trickle of reshored jobs" becomes a real trend. From the Huffington Post report:
1.Adopt insourcing tax incentives, such as extending a domestic manufacturing tax credit for clean energy and enlarging a deduction for US manufacturing activity. Also, improve the research and development tax credit by making it more generous for innovation that is actually commercialized in America. Finally, adopt a federal tax incentive for companies that reshore high-paying jobs.
2.Work to balance our trade account by continuing aggressive trade enforcement, where a major hat tip should be given to the Obama Administration for supporting domestic industries. But, the Administration must also work to stop China's currency manipulation and lower our record trade deficit with that nation.
3.Invest in infrastructure to make our economy more efficient, our businesses more competitive, and to create some demand for manufactured materials.
4.Apply Buy America laws to make sure that our manufacturers get a reasonable preference for federal procurement on everything from commemorative wristbands to major bridge reconstruction. The Department of Transportation does a good job of applying the Buy America laws on the books, but other agencies need to step up, and loopholes need to be closed.
5.Invest in our workers to ensure we have skilled human capital on the factory floor, in the research lab, and in the executive suite. Our educational system is built towards guiding every child into a four year college and every MBA onto Wall Street. That shouldn't be the case. We must rebuild our vocational education system from the ground up, or we will never make manufacturing great again.
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