Under Proposed Trade Pact, Nike Offers To Bring 10,000 Jobs To The U.S.

May 8, 2015  |  

Hot on the heels of a big jobs report comes word that Nike is offering to bring 10,000 jobs to the U.S. under a Pacific trade deal backed by President Barack Obama.

This is a sure sign that manufacturing jobs are returning to the U.S.

According to Nike, these will be manufacturing and engineering jobs that will come Stateside if the agreement is completed and enacted by Congress. To give the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) a further push, Obama is visiting Nike’s headquarters in Beaverton, OR today.

“In the trade negotiations, Vietnam, where Nike produces a large percentage of its shoes, is pushing the U.S. to lower import tariffs on footwear that can reach 20 percent of their value at the border,” reports The Wall Street Journal. However U.S. labor groups, most Democratic lawmakers and the U.S. operations of rival shoe maker New Balance oppose the TPP.

The plan to lowering tariffs on footwear and apparel, a move that is supported by Vietnam, isn’t expected to be decided until the end of the trade deal negotiations, which could come in weeks or months.

Some argue that tariff cuts would make the U.S. manufacturing operations of New Balance less competitive in Maine and Massachusetts, and this could result in job losses.

The White House argues that the TPP would open trade among 12 countries, including the U.S., Japan, Vietnam, Australia, New Zealand and Chile.

Meanwhile, Nike, which employees about  56,500 workers worldwide, has yet to give details of the manufacturing jobs.

“We believe agreements that encourage free and fair trade allow Nike to do what we do best,” Nike Chief Executive Mark Parker said in a statement. “Now we will be able to accelerate our investments to continue to drive manufacturing innovation.”

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