Yesterday, we showed some everyday household items (plates, picture frames….wine) that receive duty-free treatment under GSP and reduce costs for American families in the process.  Yet while families often save money from GSP unknowingly, manufacturers incorporate GSP into their sourcing strategy to reduce costs and increase competitiveness.

Today’s example is another product found in just about every home:


We’re not talking about the remote control, but the batteries.  If you look at the (upside down) text, you can see the battery clearly says “Made in U.S.A.”  But there’s much more to the story…

Without some sleuthing, you’d never know that Duracell imports manganese dioxide, a key raw material for alkaline batteries, from South Africa. You’d also never know that every penny of the $31.6 million in manganese dioxide imported from South Africa in 2012 entered duty free under GSP.  Total savings? Nearly $1.5 million.

Battery manufacturers aren’t the only users.  In fact, most GSP imports are raw materials, components, parts, and machinery used in American production facilities, and savings can be significant.

In 2012 alone, GSP eliminated import taxes of $93 million on chemicals, $83 million on auto parts, $46 million on industrial machinery, $38 million on electric motors, and $28 million on ferroalloys (used to manufacture steel).

That’s why iconic American manufacturers like GE, Caterpillar, Dow, and Cummins are among the 160+ American companies and associations calling on Congress to renew the GSP program.

GSP works for American manufacturers by lowering costs for key inputs and allowing them to remain competitive when selling at home and abroad. Hopefully Congress will listen.

This post is part of the 2013 Imports Work for America Week initiative, an effort by a number of organizations and individuals in the trade policy community to talk about the benefits of imports for the U.S. economy.  You can see our previous posts here and here or visit the Imports Work website here.