Warning About China, Brian Mast Gets Undersea Cable Control Act to the House Floor

U.S. Rep. Brian Mast’s, R-Fla., proposal “to limit China’s economic and military reach to vital undersea cables” is gaining momentum on Capitol Hill.

Mast introduced the “Undersea Cable Control Actat the end of last month with U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-NJ, co-sponsoring the proposal.

“The Undersea Cable Control Act would require the Biden administration to develop a strategy to limit foreign adversaries like China from accessing goods and technologies capable of supporting undersea cables and establishing agreements with allies and partners to do the same,” Mast’s office noted. “In 2019 alone, the undersea cables industry added nearly $649 billion to the U.S. economy. The American financial sector relies heavily on these cables; they support over $10 trillion in daily transactions. This legislation invokes the Export Control Reform Act – specifically Section 1752 – to restrict the export of items that could prove detrimental to the national security and the economy of the United States. The goal of the legislation is to protect this key economic infrastructure from foreign adversaries, like China.”

Last week, the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee passed Mast’s bill without opposition.

“Look what they’ve done with balloons. Look what they’ve done with social media. Why on earth would we want China to control one of the most powerful communications tools on the planet?” Mast said. “This is the exact same Chinese Communist Party that wants to topple America and put communism on top. We must protect this infrastructure and technology that Americans rely on every day.”

The bill now heads to the House floor. So far, there is no companion measure over in the U.S. Senate.

Kevin Derby
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