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July 30, 2008 

Under Secretary Mancuso Sets Forth BIS Agenda For Final Six Months of Bush Administration

This morning, Under Secretary of Commerce Mario Mancuso delivered an address to the Washington International Trade Association entitled "Sprinting to the Finish: The BIS Agenda for the Final Six Months", which focused on the Bureau of Industry and Security's (BIS) agenda for the final six months of the Bush Administration.

Under Secretary Mancuso noted that the following issues will receive "extra attention and care from the entire BIS leadership team" during the coming months:

1. Enforcement - BIS will focus on the areas of highest enforcement concern, including nations of illicit transshipment concern, proliferators and terrorists. He singled out Iran by noting that "the challenge of Iran is of singular importance, and we will do everything within our legal authority to contribute to our nation’s broader effort to address the grave Iranian challenge." He said the Iranian challenge "exemplifies why BIS special agents need enhanced enforcement authorities" and took the opportunity to reiterate the administration's strong support for the reauthorization of the lapsed Export Administration Act.

2. Regulatory Issues - Under Secretary Mancuso indicated that BIS hopes to make meaningful progress on the following important regulatory issues:

*Intra-company transfer license exception
*Deemed exports
*Thermal imaging
*Foreign availability regulation

With respect to the proposed intra-company transfer license exception, Under Secretary Mancuso said that BIS will continue to work to finalize a proposed rule setting forth procedures to facilitate intra-company transfers in ways that are efficient and secure and account for how research and development happens in today's world.

With respect to deemed exports, he noted that BIS expects to name the members of the newly created Emerging Technologies Technical Advisory Committee (ETTAC) in August and the inaugural ETTAC meeting will be held in early fall. The Under Secretary also indicated that BIS hopes to issue an update to the deemed export policy before the end of the administration.

While Undersecretary Mancuso did not elaborate on the 17(c) issue during his speech, this issue relates to efforts to resolve jurisdictional issues between BIS and the State Department on parts that are FAA certified for use in commercial aircraft. See DDTC's proposed 17(c) rule published in the Federal Register on April 11, 2008.

3. Crime Control Regulations - Indicated that BIS intends to conduct a review of global crime control regulations to ensure that they are "appropriate in light of the mandate from Congress and our national ideals."

4. International Engagement - BIS will be hosting in early September the inaugural U.S.-Israel High Technology Forum, the most senior bilateral dialogue dedicated to high technology trade and investment issues. In addition, BIS will also host formal bilateral talks with China, Hong Kong and India.

5. Management Agenda - Under Secretary Mancuso stated that BIS management is committed to work to make a smooth transition to the next administration and better position BIS for the future. He also indicated that BIS management is "committed to doing our best to attract the best and brightest to public service (and then giving them an opportunity to meaningfully contribute), better integrating our enforcement and policy functions, improving our interagency engagement, upgrading our technology infrastructure and business processes over time, and better aligning our entire workforce to address BIS’s highest priorities."

The full text of the speech can be found here.

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