WILMINGTON – The United States Secretary of the Treasury visited North Carolina's coast promoting the American Jobs Act. Secretary Timothy Geithner toured Corning Incorporated's Fiber Optics Manufacturing Facility in Wilmington Tuesday.
In a room of the Corning Fiber Plant in Wilmington, massive amounts of Fiber are tested for strength, cut and packaged for delivery around the world.
Corning's Wilmington plant is the largest fiber optics manufacturing facility in the world. In touring the facility, Geithner said it reminded him of the potential this country has.
"Even with all our challenges as a country, we are still inventing, creating, building, and exporting from companies like this around the country," said Geithner.
He said if Congress moves on measures in the American Jobs Act, which includes investments in infrastructure, more American companies will be able to grow.
"Growth will be between 1 and 2 percentage points stronger with these measures and you'll see between one and a half or more million Americans back to work with jobs,” said Geithner.
He said infrastructure is not limited to roads and bridges. It includes information infrastructure such as broadband. Corning's optical fiber plays a major role in this.
"Reliable access to high quality next generation broadband will fuel economic growth and job creation," said Chairman and CEO of Corning Inc. Wendell Weeks.
Geithner also expressed the importance of exporting; something Corning also exemplifies.
"We ship more than half the fiber produced at this plant to countries around the world which supports the President's goal of doubling exports in five years," said Weeks.
But Geithner said the American job market can't do this on their own.
"We're about 5 percent of the world's population, only about a quarter percent of global economic output, and if we are going to be strong as a country going forward it is going to be because we have a government doing a better job of expanding export markets," said Geithner.
The U.S. Senate is scheduled to take up the infrastructure proposals in the Act next week.