(St. Cloud MN-) Senator Tina Smith says the defense package passed by Congress and headed to the President’s desk contains a bipartisan provision she pushed to support bus manufacturers in Minnesota. The provision prevents federal transit dollars from being used to obtain transit buses and rail cars manufactured by Chinese state-owned or state-supported enterprises.
The Chinese government continues to use a range of state subsidies and predatory practices to undercut competition from U.S.-based manufacturers, including New Flyer’s two bus manufacturing facilities in St. Cloud and Crookston, Minnesota. In addition, Chinese-made transit vehicles have caused significant concern about national security risks. Sen. Smith, a member of the Senate Banking Committee, which oversees transit, worked to make sure the bipartisan measure on Chinese buses was included in the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2020.
“Without this provision, Chinese state-owned or state-supported bus manufacturers would be able to continue to engage in predatory pricing, win contracts, and undercut the rest of the U.S. transit bus market,” said Sen. Smith, a member of the Senate Banking Committee that has jurisdiction over U.S. transit matters. “I fought hard to protect Minnesota bus manufacturing jobs and the economy in Crookston and St. Cloud, and made sure the final defense package included this critical provision.”