Could Joe Biden's “Buy American” threaten US defense exports?

Each year, the US Federal State defends $ 600 billion to private service providers, for multiple products and services ranging from IT to cleaning services, including consulting and rolling stock. To support the American economy, in particular as he undertakes to launch a series of vast works intended to be the pillar of the industrial and social reconstruction of the country, Joe Biden has, since January, slipped into the shoes of its disputed predecessor, by supporting the emergence of the “Buy American Act”, a law which would oblige federal spending to focus mainly on national providers, initially at 55%, and gradually up to 75% of the amounts invested. During a visit to the Mack Truck Plant in Pennsylvania this summer, theThe American President had moreover withdrawn this commitment aiming, that he, to increase the resilience and the economic efficiency of the country, while protecting the American Supply Chain largely undermined by the Covid crisis.

But there is a sector that fears being the big loser of this policy flirting with protectionism, the defense industry, which each year generates more than $ 40 billion in turnover to its international customers, and which fears of see these same customers show themselves to be much less inclined to equip themselves with American equipment if Washington were to pose certain barriers. Indeed, for some countries whose trade balance is highly profitable vis-à-vis the United States, such as Japan or even Germany, signing a big check from time to time to acquire US defense equipment makes it possible to rebalance the accounts, and to silence the most grumpy. Thus Tokyo did not hesitate to order nearly 140 F-35A and B under pressure from Donald Trump, precisely so as not to face unfavorable customs barriers. As to 45 F / A 18 E / F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler that Berlin has yet to order, they appear in many aspects as a way of compensating for the enormous trade surplus generated by the sale of Mercedes, Audi and other Porsches across the Atlantic.

For Tokyo, massively ordering American defense equipment is a way to moderate the exorbitant American trade deficit with Japan, which reached $ 70 billion per year before the pandemic

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