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January 25, 2021

President Biden Issues “Buy American” Executive Order

PLEASE NOTE: Connecting the Dots is reporting the following information for MSCI members’ information only. As a reminder, as a trade association representing companies along the North American industrial supply chain, MSCI has recused itself from supporting or opposing “buy American” provisions in the past.

On Monday, January 25, President Joe Biden signed an executive order that, according to The Hill, “set in motion several changes to the implementation of the laws requiring federal government agencies to procure materials and products” from the United States. Specifically, the order:

  • Directs federal agencies to use the manufacturing extension partnership, a network of small and medium-sized businesses across 50 states and Puerto Rico, to ensure federal agencies are connecting with U.S. suppliers;
  • Creates a central review of waivers for Buy American requirements with the aim of reducing the number of unnecessary waivers, which have allowed agencies to purchase goods overseas;
  • Establishes a website where waiver requests can be publicly viewed; and
  • Creates a new senior role at the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to oversee the implementation of the order.

As The Hill said, “The executive order is in keeping with the ‘Buy American’ plan described by Biden on the campaign trail before he was elected president. Biden called for a $400 billion investment in ‘Buy American’ procurements during his first term.”

The Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME) released a statement opposing a Buy America policy for infrastructure investment, arguing that the U.S. government should instead “adopt a ‘Buy North American’ plan that recognizes “the complex supply chain linkages between the two countries and Mexico.”

Click here to read the president’s order.