The President recently launched the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, a national effort bringing together industry, universities, and the federal government to invest in the emerging technologies that will create high quality manufacturing jobs and enhance our global competitiveness.
California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom reflects on an event in Sacramento that focused on the advanced manufacturing industry:
Following the jobs-focused leadership of President Obama and his Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, I recently hosted a statewide summit in Sacramento with the California Manufacturers and Technology Association. Themed “Everything Grows with Manufacturing” and engaging 200 of our state’s best and brightest business and policy leaders, we discussed California’s past, present and future role in advanced manufacturing and the President’s call to increase our global competitiveness.
California has always been a place of dreamers and doers, where the future is literally invented. We’ve led the world in innovation, cutting-edge discoveries, research and development and technology – but we have to do better in the area of manufacturing. California manufacturing has fallen from 28 percent of our GDP to nearly 11 percent. But it’s not all bad news. According to the National Association of Manufacturers, “since 2003, California manufacturing exports rose 60 percent faster than the state’s overall economy.” Manufacturing is the key to exports and exports are critical to California and the country.
Three themes emerged in clear relief from our historic Manufacturing Summit:
First, education, pre-K thru 16, including career technical education and STEM education, is the lifeblood of long-term economic development and the key to sustained growth.
Second, California must learn from best practices – inside our borders and around the world – to develop comprehensive plans to put Californians back to work.
Three, now is the time for bold leadership and a willingness to take risks – and to bring leaders from all economic sectors and every political persuasion together – to collectively make the tough decisions to jump-start our economic engine.
That’s why I’m proud to support the President’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnership. This collaborative effort is a light-year leap forward nationwide, but ultimately, to meet the challenge of creating new high-quality, high-skill manufacturing jobs, the states must play their part.
We stand ready in California to refocus on manufacturing, reinvest in our workforce and compete with anyone in the world.
Michael Block is Assistant Director for the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs