Media Contact: Heather Wong, 202.225.3072
Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose) today issued the following statement in opposition to Section 1404 of the National Defense Authorization Act, a provision based on outdated export control regimes as it relates to high performance technology:
“Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the great work done by Chairman Hunter and Ranking Member Skelton on this legislation, but I must reluctantly rise to highlight a major problem that I hope will be fixed before this bill reaches the President’s desk.
“There is an obscure provision of the bill that I want to make sure Members know about and that is Section 1404 which would require U.S. companies to get a license before they export any goods listed on the Military Critical Technologies List. According to a copy of that list I found on the Defense Technical Information Center website, that includes computers that exceed 1500 MTOPS are considered to be military critical.
“So under this bill, computers, laptops and Sony PlayStations that exceed 1500 MTOPS would require an export license. That would be to export them anywhere. If you want to sell a Sony PlayStation to Europe, to England, you would need a Defense Department export license. I think that is a problem.
“I think that 190,000 MTOPS is an outdated metric. But to go down to 1500 MTOPS metric is literally the stone age of computing.
“I believe that if there are specific military critical technologies that are not sufficiently military controlled under existing export regulations, like night vision or surveillance devices, then let us draft something that controls those technologies. But to say that we cannot sell a laptop to someone in London, that the iPods cannot be exported to France, that the Sony PlayStations cannot be sold to Japan, I think is a mistake.
“I know that this is about war but I didn’t know that this was about war on the American economy, and I yield back the remainder of my time”.