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Rep. Napolitano Joins Local Manufacturer in Welcoming Jobs Back to the U.S.

February 22, 2012
Press Release

(Industry, CA) Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano joined Rep. Judy Chu in celebrating the grand opening of Exxel Outdoors’ new headquarters in the City of Industry. Napolitano and Chu helped Exxel Outdoors bring jobs back to the U.S. by working to close a loophole that had favored foreign manufacturers.

“Strengthening American manufacturing is critical for our economic recovery,” Napolitano said. “I am proud to support the return of jobs from overseas and welcome this new headquarters to the San Gabriel Valley.”

“All we ask for is a level playing field,” said Harry Kazazian, CEO of Exxel Outdoors. “When the playing field is level, we can produce a product in America that can compete anywhere in the world.”

Exxel Outdoors, the largest sleeping bag manufacturer in the U.S., has successfully moved jobs back to the U.S. from China in recent years.

Rep. Napolitano and Rep. Judy Chu asked the Obama Administration to close a loophole that allowed manufacturers in Bangladesh to import their products without paying duties. The administration ultimately agreed on Dec. 29th. Had this loophole been allowed, it would have jeopardized the viability of manufacturing sleeping bags in the U.S.

Napolitano is also a co-sponsor of HR 913, the Free and Fair Trade Act of 2011, which would put this decision permanently into law.  

The loophole was part of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), a set of trade laws, which expired in 2010. Rep. Napolitano’s actions helped ensure that this loophole did not return when the GSP came up for renewal.