The White House announced guidelines for protecting technologies viewed as critical to U.S. national security, including artificial intelligence, quantum information science, and semiconductors.
A senior administration official told reporters on a call that the United States would “no longer turn a blind eye” to countries “who steal technology, force companies into handing over intellectual property, undercut free and fair markets, and surreptitiously divert emerging civilian technology to build up their militaries.”
This official pointed to efforts by China to lead science and technology development globally and to efforts by Russia.
The approach also aims to create a level playing field for the American worker, this person said.
The National Security Council announced the list on Thursday with the release of a report titled “The National Strategy for Critical and Emerging Technologies.”
The new government-wide approach builds on an earlier list issued by the Commerce Department, tightening the country’s export control restrictions on items that strengthen the militaries of other countries, such as China or Russia. Commerce “has the lead on export-control — has and will continue,” a senior administration official said.
The 18-page report calls on federal agencies to promote U.S. industrial manufacturing through deregulatory actions, protecting supply chains, and workforce development.
Administration officials have warned previously that U.S. national security depends on pushing back against China’s technology advances in areas such as 5G, warning that this poses a counterintelligence risk.
On Thursday, a senior administration official said the White House hoped to “encourage” and work with allies to review protocols for outside investment, “ensuring that it doesn’t pose a security threat.”
According to a recent Pentagon analysis, China is redoubling efforts to strengthen its military arsenal and seeks to have nuclear warheads capable of reaching the U.S. “in the next five years.”
Strategists have also warned of a potential military clash between China and U.S. allies.