Key Notes:

  • President Trump’s recent executive order merely “encourages” use of goods, products and materials produced in the United States, rather than requires such use.
  • Financial assistance programs are targeted.
  • Each agency administering covered programs is required to respond to the president by May 31, 2019 on areas where Buy American principles can be maximized.
  • Stakeholders should monitor developments.

On January 31, 2019, President Donald Trump issued Executive Order 13858, “Strengthening Buy-American Preferences for Infrastructure Projects.” In the opening policy statement, the order seeks to “maximize, consistent with law, the use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United States, in Federal procurements and through the terms and conditions of Federal financial assistance awards.” During a January 31 press conference, Trump stated, “We want American roads, bridges, and railways, and everything else to be built with American iron, American steel, American concrete, and American hands … By signing this order today, we renew our commitment to an essential truth: It matters where something is made, and it matters very greatly.”

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