Hal Quinn & Harry Moser: Stronger Supply Chains Are the Key to US Manufacturing Growth

Posted on December 30, 2014 by Minerals Make Life

In recent years, U.S. manufacturing has experienced significant growth and in IndustryWeek yesterday, National Mining Association (NMA) President and CEO Hal Quinn and Harry Moser, founder of Reshoring Initiative, highlighted one of the most fundamental and influential factors of this growth: access to secure and reliable supply chains. The pair writes:

“The U.S. manufacturing renaissance has been aided by the supply of affordable domestic energy. Access to abundant energy resources boosted U.S. manufacturing’s global competitiveness, making it economically attractive to reshore operations. Another essential element for industries that gets far less attention is the minerals and metals used in many manufactured goods. Just as we need secure and affordable power to keep U.S. manufacturers competitive, we also need a reliable and secure supply chain for minerals and metals…As companies continue to reshore and the United States once again becomes a global manufacturing hub, domestic manufacturers will bolster demand for minerals and metals, thereby encouraging increased domestic mining and demonstrating the need for strong, stable supply chains of these critical materials.”

As noted in NMA’s latest study “U.S. Mines to Market,” there exists a structural mismatch between domestic minerals supply and demand from the manufacturing sector. While many manufacturers are re-shoring their businesses to reduce supply chain risks, an inefficient and redundant permitting policy hinders mining growth and threatens U.S. supply chains. Quinn and Moser continue:

“Supply chain disruptions impact manufacturers’ global competitiveness and, given the United States’ vast mineral resources, are wholly unnecessary. Access to a reliable and stable supply of minerals and metals is critical to ensure that the manufacturing industry remains a viable economic driver. Modernizing the United States’ outdated mine permitting system can provide this access and allay manufacturers’ supply concerns. Ninety-five percent of executives surveyed expressed concern about the length of the U.S. mine permitting process—which can take seven to 10 years—and its impact on the competiveness of the United States.”

While reshoring efforts have made progress, this movement depends on timely access to a stable and robust domestic minerals supply. To ensure that the United States remains a competitor in the global mining and manufacturing industry, a reformed permitting process is necessary. The House has recognized this issue by passing “The Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act,” but in order for these reforms to come to fruition, the Senate must act on similar legislation.

Read more from IndustryWeek here.

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