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Biden heads to Ohio to tout industrial renewal plan

WASHINGTON (AFP) – United States (US) President Joe Biden will travel to political battleground state Ohio to announce the launch of a new industrial renewal plan that his administration hopes will revive the country’s manufacturing sector.

The initiative, dubbed “AM Forward” (Additive Manufacturing Forward), is aimed at increasing the use of 3D printing and other next-generation production technologies among US companies, a White House statement said.

Several top US firms, including GE Aviation, Honeywell, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Siemens Energy, have committed to a voluntary pact to support US-based suppliers in adopting new parts manufacturing technologies, the statement said.

Small and medium enterprises that choose to take up the initiative will be able to avail the support of federal programmes to boost their competitiveness in the sector, the administration promised.

Biden will announce the plan in the US midwestern state of Ohio – a political battleground that has often been a bellwether in US presidential polls – ahead of a general election in November.

The president’s Democratic Party will be seeking to build on its slim majority in the US Congress at the polls. The election for Ohio’s next senator, a position previously held by a Republican considered moderate, is one that will be closely watched.

It will pit Democrat Tim Ryan against newcomer JD Vance, a 37-year-old former marine and author known for his bestselling memoir Hillbilly Elegy.

Vance won the race for the Republican nomination this week after being endorsed by former US president Donald Trump.

He graduated from the Ivy League Yale Law School and was previously opposed to Trump – famously dubbing him “America’s Hitler” – but later became an ardent supporter.

US President Joe Biden. PHOTO: AP