Chem council urges upgrades to US export-control policy

15 January 2010 23:05  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The American Chemistry Council (ACC) said on Friday that it supported a number of policy recommendations intended to enhance the security and competitiveness of US exports.

The policy recommendations were sent in a letter to President Barack Obama by the US Coalition for Security and Competitiveness (CSC), a group of which the ACC is a member.

“Without changes to the export system, American industries - including chemistry and many others - will be unable to compete on the global market,” the ACC said.

For the chemical industry, the most relevant of the suggested changes to the US export-control system include developing shared policy guidelines to encourage greater coordination of implementation, licensing and enforcement efforts, the ACC said.

The ACC also stressed the importance of abolishing re-exportation licensing requirements for exports among allied nations, as well as abolishing unilateral controls that add significant costs to exports but return little benefit in proliferation controls.

The ACC also said incentives should be offered for other nations to adopt similar export controls.

“The export-control system hasn’t been significantly upgraded in more than 20 years,” said Michael Walls, vice president of regulatory and technical affairs with the ACC. “Consider the technological innovations and medical advances that have come along in that time.

“This system must be updated to protect these innovations, while also making provisions to protect our national security,” he added.

The chemical industry accounts for ten cents out of every dollar in total US exports, and of the nearly 1m American jobs provided by the chemical industry, 227,000 are supported by exports, the ACC said.

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By: Ben DuBose
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