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Risch Introduces Legislation to Strengthen Economic and Commercial Diplomacy

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced the Economic and Commercial Opportunities and Networks Act (ECON Act), to strengthen economic and commercial diplomacy.

“U.S. foreign policy must include strong economic and commercial diplomacy and policy,” said Risch. “Today I introduced the ECON Act to ensure we have the right strategy and tools to advance economic partnerships abroad and strengthen the U.S. economy here at home.”

This legislation:

  • Strengthens the Department of State economic corps by codifying the duties of Foreign Service economic officers and establishing awards to incentivize high quality performance;
  • Invests in emerging economic leaders in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands;
  • Boosts two-way trade and bolsters investments by working with partners to reduce trade barriers;
  • Combats anti-competitive behavior, including through the establishment of a CFIUS-like committee to review potential acts of intellectual property theft or forced technology transfer; and
  • Amends U.S. anti-trust laws to go after predatory state-owned enterprises that harm U.S. companies.

Text of the ECON Act can be found here.