Cummins urges Congress to approve trade legislation

Columbus-based Cummins Inc. is urging Congress to approve the “fast track” trade legislation.

“The United States is pursuing one of the most important trade agendas in many years and we urge Congress and the president to work together to enact TPA (Trade Promotion Authority) legislation as soon as possible,” Tom Linebarger, chairman and chief executive officer of Cummins and chairman of the Business Roundtable International Engagement Committee, said in a news release.

“Trade Promotion Authority strengthens the hands of U.S. negotiators and will help ensure the best possible outcome in our global trade deals. These trade agreements provide enormous benefits to the United States by increasing the number of consumers for the products made by the employees of small and large businesses throughout the U.S.,” Linebarger said.

“Creating opportunities for American companies to reach customers through 21st century trade agreements can help fuel our economy and keep the United States globally competitive,” Linebarger said. “Passing TPA as soon as possible is critical to helping create new trade and growth opportunities for the U.S. economy, supporting jobs for American workers and farmers and strengthening communities across the United States.”

International trade has been the most important driver of growth and hiring at Cummins for more than a decade. Cummins exported about $3 billion in U.S.-made engines, generators and related products in 2014, and nearly half of Cummins’ sales were to customers outside the U.S. Cummins exports products from plants in Columbus and Seymour; Nashville, Tennessee; Charleston, South Carolina; Fridley, Minnesota; and Jamestown, New York; the release said.

Like most international companies, as Cummins grows globally more quality jobs are added in the United States, the release said.