On Monday, President Obama unveiled efforts to boost advanced, domestic manufacturing through an investment program worth over $300 million dollars and involving several federal agencies.
The White House claimed today that 700,000 manufacturing jobs have been added to the U.S. economy since 2010, a rate of growth rivaled only by the 1990s.
Seizing on this new trend, the Obama administration announced investments targeted at advanced materials, sensors, and digital manufacturing.
For instance, one of the projects to reduce dependence on foreign materials is the development of steel alloys double the strength of steel alloys today. High-tech material manufacturing is high on the list.
The Departments of Defense, Energy, Agriculture, and NASA have been tasked with directing the investment in these three areas of technological development, in an attempt to put in place recommendations from Obama’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP) report. The partnership was formed in 2011. This latest effort from the White House signifies AMP 2.0., and at the moment, the partnership is chaired by MIT president Rafael Reif and Dow Chemical Chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris.
The investments are matched by the private sector. The Department of Labor in the meanwhile is launching a $100 million dollar program to encourage competition in the development of new apprenticeship models.
AMP members Dow and Siemens, for example, have already joined in by launching apprenticeship programs. The Department of Commerce earlier this year hosted National Manufacturing Day in conjunction with industry leaders to inform American youth about the good prospects of employment and opportunities in the manufacturing sector.
The White House also introduced a $130 million dollar competition for the next five years to encourage small businesses to innovate in new technologies.
“The executive actions announced today align with the report’s recommendations by making investments in emerging, cross-cutting manufacturing technologies, training our workforce with the skills for middle-class jobs in manufacturing, and equipping small manufacturers to adopt cutting-edge technologies,” the White House said in a statement.
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