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Press Release | Academy Statement on proposed legislation H.R. 1934 – May 10, 2021

May 10, 2021

AAD Staff

Washington, D.C. – On Friday, May 7, 2021, the American Academy of Diplomacy has issued the following statement in support of the proposed legislation H.R. 1934, “Promoting United States Leadership in 5G Act of 2021,” particularly with regards to its focus on enhancing U.S. role in international standards-setting bodies.

STEPPING UP TO THE PLATE AND SETTING THE RULES: THE US AND GLOBAL STANDARDS Statement by the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Diplomacy May 7, 2021

Standards matter. The U.S. government needs to step up its international standards game. Other governments are aggressively playing the international standards to advance their companies’ interests and to the serious disadvantage of American companies and workers.

Standards from gauges on pipelines to the most sophisticated computer or aerospace technology can make or break U.S. competitiveness and the job creation that goes with exports. China and the European Union understand this reality and are, unfortunately, regularly outplaying the U.S. in the international standardsetting organizations. This is particularly the case for development of 5G standards, where Chinese and European technical submissions vastly outnumber those from the U.S.

The challenge is not in the standards development process where the U.S. system delivers high-quality technical standards but in the often-politicized process of securing international adoption and utilization of those standards. Unlike the U.S., China, European and other governments send high level officials to intergovernmental standards-setting meetings who are adept at the politics winning international support. We need to match that effort.

The Academy commends H.R. 1934, “Promoting United States Leadership in 5G Act of 2021," that would mandate higher level attention, enhancing our role in international standards-setting bodies, and even closer cooperation between government and private sector experts.

To date, U.S. government performance on standards as set in international bodies is well below what American workers, businesses and farmers expect and demand. The Academy calls on the Departments of State and Commerce, as well as other U.S. Government agencies, to improve significantly their collaboration on the global stage to not cede ground to our competitors. The Academy supports new legislation to this end and calls for the appropriation of resources to fulfill this mandate.

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