Bill to Boost Tech Competitiveness with China Passes Senate
Contains Senator Murkowski Arctic Priorities
U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) voted in favor of the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, previously known as the Endless Frontier Act, which passed the Senate in a 68-32 vote. The bipartisan legislation counters China by confronting the nation’s economic and geopolitical power and invests in science, technology, and U.S. manufacturing, including reliable supply chains for critical minerals. The bill contains Arctic priorities championed by Senator Murkowski.
To ensure that the United States has adequate capacity to prevent and respond to security threats in the Arctic region, the bill addresses the need to invest in a significantly expanded icebreaker fleet. The legislation also includes language requiring the President to appoint a Special Representative or Special Envoy with the rank of Ambassador, who will also serve as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Arctic Affairs.
“America has long been a leader in innovation, but we must continue to invest in these priorities to remain a global leader and reclaim the manufacturing capabilities that have been ceded to China. America can and will maintain a position as the most advanced nation on earth, so long as we continue to invest in technology, research, and production,” said Senator Murkowski. “This legislation makes investments in STEM workforce and capacity, invests in our National Labs, recognizes the need for more production of critical minerals, supports American trade, strengthens our national security and more. I helped secure a number of provisions focused on the Arctic—from prioritizing investments such as icebreakers to necessary staffing. While there is more work to be done in regards to our nation’s focus on the Arctic region given its geostrategic value and importance, I’m proud to get behind a policy initiative to help ensure American competitiveness.”