The United States Senate on Tuesday validated a package of measures to strengthen the US technology sector, in order to face competition from China. The legislation implies financing of the national industry, prohibition of certain imports and exports and diplomatic dispositions to fight in the field of global influence. An economic effort of almost 250 trillion dollars to try to maintain American leadership in the 21st century.
The upper house of the United States Congress voted 68-32 on legislation to deal with Chinese competition in the technology sector. The will to establish a hard line on politics with the Asian giant is one of the points that “unites the divided US Congress” as described by the Reuters agency.
The package of measures consists of almost 250 billion US dollars, of which 190 billion will be to strengthen research and national technological production. In addition, it allows an expenditure of 54 billion for production and specific research in the field of semiconductors and telecommunications equipment. This last item includes 2 billion destined for chips used by automakers.
A measure applauded by the company General Motors, which described it as “an important step to address the continuing shortage of semiconductors that impacts the US automobile industry,” according to Reuters reports. According to the Secretary of Commerce, Gina Raimondo, the law will allow the creation of between 7 and 10 new plants of this material.
On the other hand, the legislation also contemplates a wide range of provisions against Chinese technological products. For example, it involves a ban on Tiktok app downloads on government-owned devices. In addition, it prohibits the purchase of drones produced by companies backed by the Beijing government.
Another point is the imposition of sanctions on Chinese entities that have participated in cyberattacks or that have violated the intellectual property rights of American organizations and companies. In addition, the text entails a review of exports to block products that, according to the United States, can be used in human rights violations in Chinese territory.
Economic and diplomatic effort to maintain itself as the first world power
Basically, it is a legislative framework to avoid lagging behind the Chinese technology market, in whatever area can be predicted right now. “If we do nothing, our days as the dominant superpower will come to an end. We will not allow these days to end under our mandate. We will not allow the United States to become a mediocre nation in this century, ”declared Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who promoted the measure.
A position shared by President Joe Biden, who stated: “We are in a competition to win the 21st century. The starting gun has already been fired. We cannot risk being left behind ”. An economic effort that some critics, cited by the British agency Reuters, equated to the impulse of Beijing dubbed “Made in China 2025”.
Regardless of the material scope, the law provides symbolic and diplomatic points, to try to counteract the ground gained by China in terms of global influence. As well as to reverse the national retreat that implied the strategy of former President Donald Trump of “America First”.
The law carries with it the authorization of Taiwanese diplomats and military personnel to display their flag and wear their uniforms when they are on an official visit to the United States. Recently, Washington sent a package of 750,000 vaccines to the island country, claiming distrust of the Chinese drugs proposed by China, a nation that claims sovereignty over the island. The Taipei authorities reported that Beijing blocked their access to the vaccine market, something that was denied by the Chinese government.
On the other hand, according to Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell, the text will allow more spending for NASA and its Artemis mission, which seeks to return to the moon. “China has made it clear, they are going to Mars. We will return to the moon to prepare to go to Mars, “he said.
The law has yet to pass the House of Representatives, where six members give a majority to Democrats. Finally, the legislation will need to be signed by President Biden.