Editor’s Note: Cross-posted from OIRA Watch.
From: The National Law Review
Emerging Technologies Update
R. Scott Nuzum, Eric C. Wagner | Van Ness Feldman LLP
BIS Contemplating Export Controls for Certain Emerging Technologies
On November 19, 2018, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS)—an agency within the Department of Commerce—published an ANPR seeking public comment on criteria for identifying emerging technologies that are essential to U.S. national security. The BIS ANPR comes at a time of heightened scrutiny over global technology transfers. The past year alone has been dominated by headlines of (i) potential national security concerns related to the import of Chinese telecommunications technologies; (ii) potential supply chain attacks on U.S. technology manufacturers; and (iii) escalating trade tensions between the United States and China precipitated at least in part by U.S. objections over Chinese theft of intellectual property.
Given the potential negative impacts of BIS’s contemplated regulatory action—as well as the fact that BIS issued the ANPR immediately before the year-end holiday season—many companies petitioned the agency for an extension of the original 30-day comment period. While BIS did extend the comment period an additional three weeks, the compressed comment period undoubtedly prevented some companies and individuals from offering more detailed insights. Given the potential economic and security impacts of the ANPR, companies may wish to engage with the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) within the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as an alternative or parallel strategy to ensure that the Administration is aware and understands the potential implications on U.S. companies.