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About National Export Initiative and Export Control Reform

Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke continued the administration’s push to boost U.S. exports 100% by 2015 in accordance with President Obama’s 3/11/10 executive order establishing the National Export Initiative (“NEI”).  Last week, Secretary Locke addressed the 2010 International District Export Council (“DEC”) at a conference in Detroit, noting recent economic successes as a result of the NEI and the continuation of policies “knocking down trade barriers that prevent U.S. companies from accessing foreign markets.”  Couple these efforts with the President’s Export Control Reform Initiative released back in April of this year and it seems legislation favorable to easing export control regulations is not too far away.  With elections forthcoming and control of both the House and Senate at stake, what does the future hold for the goals of the NEI and the reformation of export control regulations to help boost the U.S. economy?

It does not seem likely that a change in the Congressional majority (or lack thereof) will dampen the chances for reform to occur.  Generally, export controls reform is more likely to be supported by those member of Congress whose constituents are located in more industry-based areas, rather than member basing their decisions on party-lines.  Furthermore, recent pushes from lobbyists such as the Emergency Committee for American Trade will only increase the chances for reform.  With Congress ready to re-focus their attention on legislative matters after elections, we can only wait and see what happens next.  Stay tuned…

by James C. Freije from “the Subject to Inquiry blog” of The Government, Regulatory and Criminal Investigations Department of McGuireWoods LLP

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