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Leadership Needed On Fiscal Debt, Global Trade, Says UPS CEO

UPS Chairman and CEO Scott Davis called on leaders in Washington, D.C., to prepare a bipartisan debt reduction plan by January, saying the nation’s economy is being held back by its debt load and the uncertainty of fiscal policy.

“It’s not too late to act,” asserted Davis, adding a debt reduction plan should be drafted now for immediate consideration when the newly elected Congress returns in January.

“I believe it’s realistic to have it approved early next year,” said Davis. “If our leaders work together and can compromise, we can deal with these problems and get our nation on a sustainable fiscal path.”

In a speech prepared for delivery later today to a gathering of Washington state business leaders, the UPS CEO described the United States as having reached a crossroads.

“At this moment, our country's Board of Directors -- the President and Congress – are facing not one, but two self-inflicted crises: the impending fiscal cliff and the crushing trade imbalance.

“Because Congress couldn’t agree on common sense fiscal reforms last year, we now face a double whammy of potential shocks to our economy,” he added, citing automatic spending cuts and tax increases that are slated to kick in at the beginning of 2013.

Uncertainty about the looming “fiscal cliff” is causing many businesses to delay spending decisions, he said.

“When companies don’t spend and hire, the business engine driving our country sputters along. And the economy stagnates.”

Davis said the gridlock in Washington fosters doubt about the near term future in the minds of business leaders. “We need a predictable environment in which we can plan, invest, hire, grow, trade and prosper.”

A former chairman of the Atlanta Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors and a member of the CEO Fiscal Leadership Council, Davis also is supporting a new campaign called “Fix the Debt.” The effort is being led by former U.S. Senator Alan Simpson and President Clinton’s Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles.

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