On Tuesday, the Senate Banking Committee held the nomination hearing of Alan Estevez to be Undersecretary for Industry and Security of the Department of Commerce. Throughout the process, Mr. Estevez answered thoughtfully and provided welcome clarity regarding how he would use the full arsenal of the Bureau of Industry and Security’s (BIS) tools to counter China’s anticompetitive and unfair practices, human rights abuses, and tactics to maneuver around our nation’s regulatory structures. China Tech Threat looks forward to the swift confirmation of Mr. Estevez. Please read Roslyn Layton’s full testimony here.
To garner a wide understanding of reactions to the hearing, China Tech Threat reached out to former BIS leaders.
Mario Mancuso, who led BIS during George W. Bush’s Administration, noted that:
“While a sharp, focused, free-standing U.S. policy posture is vital to counter the China threat, it will also be important for the next undersecretary to engage in technology diplomacy–to lean in with allies and partners in Europe (e.g., UK, Germany) and Asia (e.g., AUS, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore and ROK) to develop a common operating picture with respect to the global landscape and threat, especially with respect to semiconductors and emerging technologies.”
William Reinsch, Undersecretary of Commerce for Export Administration during Bill Clinton’s Administration, commented on the questions in the hearing, noting:
“They were exactly what one would expect in a confirmation hearing – avoid confrontation and agree with the questioners. The interesting one was on the use of unilateral controls. That was probably the right thing to say in a confirmation hearing, but it is not quite the same tone that acting U/S Pelter set when he testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. The other comment is simply to note that it’s a misconception to think that the BIS Undersecretary is going to be making these decisions with respect to China. They’re going to be made in the White House, and he will be tasked with implementing them. He will probably be in the room when the decisions are made, but he won’t have the last word.”
Continue to follow Mr. Estevez’s path to this ever critical position at www.FutureofBIS.com.