Commerce National Security Strategy on its Way

Posted 1/12/24

The Commerce Department plans to announce a department-wide national security strategy in the coming weekS to address major priorities and move forward on its mission to “protect, promote and preserve our national security,” according to Deputy Secretary Don Graves.

Commerce is playing a greater role in protecting national security than ever before, Mr. Graves said. “New landmark legislation has made it possible for us to meet our major national security challenges head-on – from chips and semiconductors to revitalizing America's industrial base and unleashing technology innovation. And we are looking to sustain and expand that role in the days ahead.”

He spoke at the launch of the National Foreign Trade Council’s Alliance for National Security and Competitiveness.

The Deputy Secretary offered no details about the upcoming strategy. But he told the gathering that new methods for responding to national security are needed. “At the Department of Commerce, we are focused on national security more than ever. We are investing in our tools today to ensure we’re prepared for whatever challenges we may face in our future national security environment.”

Export Controls

One of the tools at Commerce’s disposal is the implementation of export controls to ensure that the US private sector’s technological innovation is not diverted to destructive ends that harm US national security while also still allowing for technological innovation to take place domestically. Another key priority is the development of defense partnerships.

Mr. Graves pointed to the department’s sharp focus on weakening Russia’s war machine through aggressive export control measures and also business development campaigns to support commercial linkages with Ukraine.

US supply chain resilience is a national security imperative for Commerce. The department will convene a diverse array of public and private sector leaders at a Supply Chain Data and Analytics Summit later this year, he said.

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