Rep. Hyde introduces bill to control U.S. arms technology to China
Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., and a handful of House lawmakers have proposed legislation to keep certain American technologies out of the hands of the Chinese military and increase pressure on the European Union to abide by its 1989 arms embargo with China.
The legislation, “2005 East Asia Security Act” (H.R. 3100), follows up with lawmakers’ “strong concerns” that certain EU arms manufacturers are supplying the Chinese military in spite of the embargo. (On April 14, the European Parliament voted to oppose lifting its arms embargo for China.) The legislation notes there’s sufficient evidence that exports of arms and related components to China have “increased eightfold from 2001 to 2003” from certain EU countries.
The Bush administration and certain members of Congress are concerned that China’s military buildup threatens political stability in Asia, especially with regards to the country’s threats to neighboring Taiwan.
Hyde’s legislation, if passed, would require the Bush administration to provide Congress an annual list of EU countries involved in arms shipments to China and to not approve any export licenses of “dual use” items, or technology with both commercial and military uses, unless the administration determines it’s “important to counterterrorism, nonproliferation, or other national security interests of the United States.”
The proposed legislation also calls for the Bush administration to “strengthen international coordination and execution” of its international arms export control efforts through bilateral and multilateral agreements with members states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.