1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington DC 20500
4:40 p.m. EDT
Chairman: Good afternoon. The Vice President and I had very fruitful meetings with senators and members of the House of Representatives from both parties to discuss an issue that is related to our economic security and national security: the resilience and reliability of critical supply chains.
This is a crucial area, and Republicans and Democrats consider this to be one of the best conferences-I think this is the best conference so far, even though we have only been here for about five weeks. But this is just like in the past-people are actually on the same page.
In the past, the work of the two parties has been completed. The leaders of this action in the House of Representatives and the Senate have done-have done an excellent job, and I want to thank them for their leadership.
We are on this basis. The bottom line is simple: Whether it's a car, prescription drugs or food from a local grocery store, Americans will never face a shortage of the goods and services they rely on.
Remember, there is a shortage of personal protective equipment during the pandemic-this means we don't have face masks. We do not have gowns or gloves to protect our frontline health workers.
We heard horrible stories. Doctors and nurses wore garbage bags on their work clothes and garbage bags on their clothes so that they would not be in trouble because they did not have work clothes. They repeatedly clean and reuse masks in the operating room.
That should never happen. In the United States, this situation will never happen again. In order to protect and provide our people in a state of national emergency, we do not have to rely on foreign countries, especially foreign countries that have no common interests or values.
Someone may remember that this is why one of the first administrative orders I signed was to ensure that we make more protective equipment for medical staff at home.
Today, I am about to sign another executive order that will help resolve the vulnerabilities in the supply chain of other key sectors of our economy so that the American people are prepared to endure any crisis and rely on ourselves.
This is to ensure that the United States can deal with every challenge we face in this new era, including epidemics, but also national defense, cyber security, climate change, and so on. The best way to do this is to invest domestically and protect and enhance the US competitive advantage. As I said from the beginning, when I run: we will invest in the United States. We will invest in American workers. Then we can be in a better position and even surpass the competition we are doing now.
A flexible, diverse and secure supply chain will help revitalize our domestic manufacturing capabilities and create high-paying jobs instead of $15 an hour, which is what we will do one day. In my opinion, the sooner the better. However, the work was carried out at the prevailing wage level.
We will spare no effort to provide new opportunities for small businesses, communities of color and economically difficult areas. I will promote new investments in research and innovation and our employees, investments in training and university partnerships, which will lead to the development of new technologies and new solutions.
All of this will not only enhance our domestic production capacity, but will also help unlock new markets around the world and provide more opportunities for American companies to export the goods we will manufacture.
These are common-sense solutions available to all Americans, including workers and business leaders, Republicans and Democrats. This is related to resilience, identifying possible loopholes in our supply chain, and ensuring that we have prepared backups or solutions.
Remember the old proverb: "Because of the lack of nails, the shoes are lost. Because of the lack of shoes, the horse is lost." It goes on and on until the kingdom is lost, and all need horseshoe nails. Even if a small failure occurs at a certain point in the supply chain, it may cause external influences to further affect the supply chain.
Recently, we have seen a shortage of computer chips-the shortage of computer chips I encountered here-I can hardly imagine. It is called a "semiconductor"-causing delays in car production, thereby shortening the working hours of American workers. Horseshoe nails of the 21st century.
This semiconductor is smaller than a postage stamp, but it has more than 8 billion-8 billion transistors, which is 10,000 times thinner than the thickness of a hair in the chip. These chips are a miracle of innovation and design. They have provided a powerful force for the entire country, allowing many of our modern lives to continue-not only our cars, but also our smart phones, TVs, radios, medical diagnostic equipment, etc. .
We need to ensure that these supply chains are safe and reliable. I am guiding senior officials in my government to work with industry leaders to find solutions to semiconductor shortages, and work with the House of Representatives and the Senate. They have approved the bill, but they need (inaudible) $37 billion (short-term) to ensure that we have this capability. We will also work hard for this. But we all realize that specific problems will not be solved immediately.
At the same time, we are contacting allies, semiconductor companies and other companies in the supply chain to increase production and help us solve the bottlenecks we are currently facing. We need to stop helping-after the supply chain crisis hits, we need to stop catching up. First, we need to prevent supply chain crises.
In some cases, increasing resilience will mean increasing the production of certain types of elements in our homes. In other cases, this means working more closely with our trusted friends and partners who share the same values, so that our supply chain cannot be used as leverage.
This will mean identifying and enhancing production capacity that can be quickly transformed into production capacity and increase production capacity in an emergency. As we did in the 1960s, this will mean investing in research and development to ensure the long-term competitiveness of our manufacturing base in the coming decades.
There are two things about the order I want to sign. First, it requires a 100-day review of four important products: semiconductors-one type; key minerals and materials, such as rare earths, used to make everything from hard steel to aircraft; three, medicines and their ingredients; four , Advanced batteries, just like the batteries used in electric cars.
The two parties strongly support rapid review of these four areas because they are essential to protecting and enhancing the competitiveness of the United States.
Second, the order will begin a long-term review of the industry foundation of the six sectors of our entire economy next year. These reviews will determine policy recommendations to
[Strengthen] Our supply chain should-strengthen our supply chain at every step, and it is vital to start implementing these recommendations immediately. We will not wait for the review to be completed before we begin to bridge the existing gap.
As we carry out this work, my government will recruit all kinds of American talents, including labor and industry leaders, policy experts, scientists, farmers, and engineers, to solicit their opinions.
I am very happy to meet my members of Congress-Republican leaders and Democrats. They are leading the trend. We will maintain close contact with members on both sides of the aisle and continue to advance our common goals.
Everyone has a role to play to strengthen our supply chain as well as our country. This is the United States of America. Compared with any country in the world, we are fully prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st century. If we work together, there is nothing, nothing, nothing that we cannot achieve. This is what we decided to do today, and this is what we have to do: work together.
Therefore, I thank everyone. I am very optimistic about the meeting with colleagues in Congress today. Now, I am going to sign the executive order.
(Sign an executive order.)
Thank you all.
Q: Mr. President, are you disappointed that the Senate has not confirmed more cabinet nominees?
PRESIDENT: Yes, but I did not blame it on the Senate. I blame it on the failure to make a reasonable transition.
As you know, there were a lot of people in the previous government-the cabinet confirmed it before it was sworn in. This is the tradition. But we are doing well. I think we will keep in good shape.
Q: What about Neera Tanden?
Chairman: Thank you.
Question: Do you want to talk to the King of Saudi Arabia?
Chairman: I want to talk to him. I haven't spoken to him yet.
Question: Do you want to talk to him today?
Question: Sir, I’m sorry, would you like to say whether you have read Khashoggi’s report?
Chairman: What should I take? Sorry.
Q: Have you read Jamal Khashoggi's report from ODNI?
Chairman: Yes. Yes I have.
4:50 p.m. EDT
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