Trump To Sign Executive Order To Examine Defense Manufacturing And Supply Chain

REUTERS/Michael Spooneybarger

Alex Pfeiffer White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump will sign an executive order Friday directing a whole government assessment of the defense industry’s manufacturing capabilities and its associated supply chain.

The Department of Defense already issues an annual report on the defense industrial base, but this executive order calls for Trump to receive a report after 270 days conducted by not only the DOD, but also several other cabinet departments.

Peter Navarro, who serves as the director of the White House’s Trade Council, said that this order will take a “whole of government” approach, which he described as “revolutionary.”

The order comes at the at the end of the White House’s “Made in America Week,” and Navarro said that this order recognizes that as the U.S. has lost factories, its defense industrial base now faces “increasing gaps in capabilities.”

The White House aide said that there is only one company left in the U.S. that repairs propellers for submarines. The holistic approach of the order means that it will also address possible workforce gaps in skilled labor, according to Navarro.

Alex Gray, the White House’s deputy director for the defense industrial base, told reporters that a healthy manufacturing base and supply chain is “critical to the economic strength and national security of the United States.”