Trump signs defense bill with weakened China measures

Leroy Wright
August 16, 2018

The bill was signed at the U.S. Army's Fort Drum base in NY following a 12-day vacation and is named after one of his political critics and senator from Arizona, John McCain.

The NDAA for 2019 authorizes the allocation to the U.S. Department of Defense of $250 million for the provision of security assistance to Ukraine, including $50 million for lethal weapons.

"We resolutely oppose any form of official or military contact between the United States and Taiwan, including USA arms sales to Taiwan", Ma said.

The House passed a Pentagon spending bill in June, while the Senate is expected to start considering its version as soon as this week.

Leaders of USA intelligence agencies have said they are concerned that ZTE, Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and some other Chinese companies are beholden to the Chinese government or Communist Party, raising the risk of espionage.

However, the Trump administration opposed putting stronger measures against the Chinese companies in the defense bill, which ultimately included watered-down controls on USA government contracts with China's ZTE Corp and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd.

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"It does nothing to identify real security risks or improve supply chain security, and will only serve to stifle innovation while increasing internet costs for U.S. consumers and businesses", Huawei said. That measure was seen as targeting China.

It includes an amendment prohibiting sales to Turkey of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets until the Pentagon issues a report on Turkish-American relations in 90 days.

Turkey's plans to purchase the S-400 missile defence systems from Russian Federation too could be one of the reasons behind the ban on the sale of the F-35s to Ankara.

The $717 billion act includes several sections on China, some of which violate the One-China policy, a ministry spokesperson said.

"We would not be here for today's signing ceremony without the dedicated efforts without the dedicated members of Congress who worked so hard to pass the National Defense Authorization Act", the president said in Fort Drum, New York on Monday.

"The US side should objectively and fairly treat Chinese investors, and avoid CFIUS becoming an obstacle to investment cooperation between Chinese and US firms", it said in a short statement.

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