Page 16: of Marine News Magazine (October 2015)
Salvage & Spill Response
When the commandant for the Coast Guard, Adm. Paul involved in new build activities. And, where does SCA get involved to further the agenda of the ship repair
Zukunft, warns that any changes to the Jones Act would industry? “put our entire U.S. ? eet in jeopardy,” I think it’s prudent
While some of the trade skills are common, the process for all of us, including Sen. McCain, to listen.
by which one maintains and modernizes a ship is com- pletely different than the process to build it. Repair requires
As President of the Shipbuilders Council of America (SCA), what is your primary advocacy today in terms taking a ship apart and putting it back together. Getting of shipyard issues?
equipment off a completed ship is often more dif? cult
As a shipbuilding and repair industry, we touch all 50 than installing it in a module that ultimately becomes part of the ship. Just as SCA supports the shipbuilding accounts states and 435 Congressional districts with the nearly 500,000 American jobs we create. For every direct mari- of the Navy and Coast Guard without advocating for in- time job we create, ? ve more are generated. It’s those hard- dividual programs, SCA supports the ship depot mainte- nance and various modernization accounts. In addition, working men and women our industry provides jobs to, as mentioned earlier, several of our members are building as well as the substantial investments the shipbuilding and and repairing vessels, either commercially and/or for the repair companies have made to grow our ? eet to reach the military, and in some instances, in all of these categories. market demands of the next century, that guide the work of
So, ship repair is equally as important as shipbuilding for SCA. To that end, it’s imperative that we work to maintain the SCA and we advocate for the strength and health of the integrity of the Jones Act, which serves as a strong back- bone for our nation’s economic and national security. The both segments of the shipyard industrial base.
Jones Act provides certainty for the jobs our industry cre- ates, as well as the strength of our Navy ? eet. But in order
The most recent attack on the Jones Act from Senator
McCain was particularly troubling in that it reached to provide that stability, we need stable funding for govern- the stage of a bill rider. Industry and all sector stake- ment ship construction and repair. While we understand holders responded strongly. But, what’s the status of the driving forces behind funding restrictions like those the Jones Act today and how safe is its position, really?
The Jones Act supports a domestic ? eet of 40,000 proposed in sequestration, we cannot and should not do it on the backs of our armed forces. Time and again, the lead- commercial vessels, nearly 500,000 American jobs, and ers of all branches of the military – Navy, Air Force, Army, roughly $100 billion in annual revenue to the economy. Marine Corps and Coast Guard – have advised that drastic
In addition to the tremendous impact our industry has spending cuts to our defense programs not only put lives at on the U.S. economy, we play a critical role in our na- risk but also impede on their ability to execute the National tion’s national security. To outsource our ? eet – the eyes Military Strategy. As our equipment provides the tools that and ears of our waterfront, waterways and ports – would our military men and women need, we will continue our be to outsource our national security, something that our ? ght to ensure that our military has the proper funding it nation cannot afford to do in these trying times abroad, in needs to keep those in harm’s way as safe as they can be.
which the threats to our country and our allies continues to grow each and every day. That’s why the Jones Act has
What would you tell those who may say that U.S. yards broad bipartisan support in both chambers in congress, as exist only because they are also protected?
well as the backing from every modern day U.S. president.
To say that U.S. yards exist because they are protected
Maintaining a strong commercial shipbuilding and ship is completely false. In fact, quite the opposite is true. U.S. repair base under the Jones Act, is also critical for Navy shipyards don’t receive one dollar in the way of subsidies and Coast Guard shipbuilding. Without that strong com- or preferential treatment as many other foreign shipyards mercial shipyard industry, there would be far less supplier do. This fact is in stark comparison to the way shipyards companies, less heavy machinery capability, less Naval ar- in places like China and Korea are treated. In some cases, chitects, and so on, and that would fundamentally impact the entire shipbuilding industry in countries like Japan are the cost of Navy and Coast Guard ships, as well as, reduce supported and controlled at the highest levels of govern- severely the available pool of a skilled workforce that can ment. I will share this one concrete example with you: In build and repair the most advanced and complex Navy and January, China’s COSCO group received a $1.75Bn ? nan-
Coast Guard in the world. This is why there has always cial agreement with Export-Import Bank of China (China been steadfast support for the Jones Act from the Navy. Exim Bank) for its new shipbuilding program. The loan
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