MIDLAND, Mich. — The CEO of a major multinational corporation called for “immediate, decisive investments” in the green manufacturing sector to help “boost America’s exports, lower the trade deficit, create jobs and increase its competitiveness in a dynamic world marketplace.”
Stephanie A. Burns, chairman, president and CEO of Dow Corning Corp., a firm with business that includes solar panel manufacturing, made her remarks in her keynote address at the 2010 International District Export Council Conference session “Capitalizing on America’s Export Advantages: Green & Innovation.”
“I’m convinced that green jobs, especially green manufacturing jobs, can be a major factor in our economic recovery,” Burns said. “I believe that with the right mix of private investment, government support, and entrepreneurial spirit, we can revitalize the heart of our nation’s economy — our manufacturing sector. We need to make this commitment now, or the net long-term effect will be the export of jobs today and the import of foreign-made solar panels tomorrow.”
“Other nations have adopted aggressive policies to support the growth of their renewable-energy manufacturing base,” she said. “But companies that hope to manufacture in the U.S. are faced with discouraging barriers. It is time for America to put into place incentives to attract this growing sector. There is an immediate need for strategic, short-term, demand-side incentives that will pave the way for solar power growth, jobs and an export market in the United States.”
Burns also discussed Dow Corning’s proposed four-point plan to grow the domestic solar industry, which she said addresses many of the manufacturing, legislative, regulatory and workforce-related factors that influence America’s ability to develop a thriving, domestic industry that will increase exports.