WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), ranking member and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today applauded committee passage of their bipartisan, comprehensive China legislation. Entitled the Strategic Competition Act, the legislation is an unprecedented, bipartisan effort to mobilize all United States strategic, economic, and diplomatic tools for an Indo-Pacific strategy that enables the U.S. government to compete effectively with the People’s Republic of China and the challenges it poses to our national and economic security for decades to come.
The Strategic Competition Act advances concrete cooperation with alliances and partnerships; restores American leadership of international and regional organizations; addresses China’s predatory economic practices; emphasizes economic strength and innovation in technology and digital connectivity; and grounds U.S. policy in our nation’s values and highest aspirations. With today’s markup, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee becomes the first committee in the Senate to act on comprehensive China legislation this Congress.
“From the beginning, I have said that any China legislation needs to be strong, actionable, and truly bipartisan. I believe the package we passed out of committee today meets those criteria,” said Ranking Member Risch. “As it is written, this legislation addresses my top priority: confronting the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) political influence across our higher education institutions. CCP influence undermines freedom of speech and debate on campus, and poses real risks of intellectual property theft. Expanding the scope of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to review foreign contributions in U.S. higher education institutions will give us the ability to address these issues, and I look forward to working with Senator Menendez to ensure this critical provision reaches the president’s desk for signature. As Congress and the administration continue to focus on the challenges posed by the CCP, we must ensure that we are truly highlighting America’s free market means of competitiveness.”
“There has been no shortage of discussion in recent years about the need to reimagine our nation’s competitive posture towards China. There has, however, been a lack of results – until today. With this overwhelming bipartisan vote, the Strategic Competition Act becomes the first of what we hope will be a cascade of legislative activity for our nation to finally meet the China challenge across every dimension of power, political, diplomatic, economic, innovation, military and even cultural,” said Chairman Menendez. “There should be little doubt that China and the Communist Party under Xi Jinping’s brand of hyper-nationalism is unlike any challenge America has ever faced. That is why today, with this bill, I am more confident than ever in our ability to send a bill for President Biden’s signature that lays out a new Indo-Pacific policy and strategy for a more prosperous and secure future for the United States, and for the world. I am very proud to have our Committee lead the way in this Senate-wide effort and thank Ranking Member Risch and all our Committee colleagues for their contributions to getting this unprecedented legislation over the finish line.”
Key provisions of the Strategic Competition Act include: