FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CONTACT: CHRISTI HARLAN
Thursday, June 24, 1999 202-224-0894

CHAIRMAN GRAMM'S OPENING STATEMENT AT HEARING
ON INDUSTRY VIEWS OF THE EXPORT ADMINISTRATION ACT

Sen. Phil Gramm, chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, issued the following statement today at the opening of the full committee hearing on industry views of reauthorizing the Export Administration Act:

"We've been trying to write legislation to reauthorize the Export Administration Act. There have been 11 attempts in Congress to do this. We don't plan to make it 12.

"What we want is input as we try to deal with dual objectives. The first objective is to sell as many goods and services as we can; create as many jobs as we can; make as much money as we can; invest as much money as we can to create technology to create jobs, growth and opportunity so that everybody in America and the world is rich and happy and free.

"That's one objective, and to advance that objective, we need to sell things that embody a lot of technology that people want to pay a lot of money for.

"Our second objective is recognizing that there are some evil people in the world who would like to take our technology and use it against us. And so, what we want to do is achieve all of objective No. 1 without creating a problem in giving technology to those who might use it to harm the United States.

"We have written a bill that I think tries to bring a very practical approach to the problem by recognizing that once something is mass marketed, once something is available, once you can buy it on the Internet, once you can go to Radio Shack and purchase it, you might wish that a potential adversary didn't have it, but you can wish all you want -- they're going to get it.

"So, what we're trying to do is take the roughly 10,000 items that go through the time-consuming review process every year and maybe knock as many as 9,000 out of the process by setting out a standard for mass marketing and a constant reevaluation of that standard.

"The second major feature of the bill, as I see it, is making the penalties stiff for those who are knowing and willful in violating the law."

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