Washington. D.C. – Steel Manufacturers Association (SMA) president Philip K. Bell issued the following statement in response to the president’s State of the Union Address to the Nation:

“Tonight President Trump gave an inspiring speech outlining his vision for our Country. The SMA shares the President’s goal of growing our economy by investing in and improving our Nation’s infrastructure and workforce development programs. The SMA, representing over 75 percent of domestic steelmaking capacity, strongly supports the President’s infrastructure proposal that calls for an investment of 1.5 trillion dollars over the next decade to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure.

We applaud the President’s announcement in the State of the Union Address to launch this meaningful investment to fix the infrastructure deficit in our country. It is also important that taxpayer funded projects utilize steel that is melted and poured in the United States to the greatest extent possible. Long-standing Buy America provisions should be upheld,” said Bell. The SMA recently joined eleven other steel and manufacturing organizations to urge President Trump to address the infrastructure crisis in America and to embrace strong Buy America requirements for infrastructure investment (Buy America Letter).

Bell added, “SMA members manufacture high-quality steel products that are critical to the construction and renewal of the Nation’s infrastructure and we urge Congress to work with President Trump to pass a major funding bill to rebuild and modernize our aging infrastructure. This along with developing a 21st century workforce will help forge a path towards greater prosperity.”

SMA notes that even if a much-needed infrastructure bill were to be signed into law tomorrow, it will take time for the projects to get underway and for the positive effects to be felt by U.S. steel manufacturers.  Therefore, the Administration should not delay in taking meaningful action under section 232 to prevent surging offshore steel imports from undermining our national security and the viability of the U.S. steel industry.

SMA is North America’s largest steel industry trade association, and the primary association for electric arc furnace steel producers.  SMA’s 25 producer member companies account for over seventy-five percent of total domestic steelmaking capacity. SMA members have operations in Canada, Mexico, 43 U.S. states and 115 congressional districts. For more information visit SMA’s website at www.steelnet.org  or our Facebook page.