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Congress Under Pressure To Ban Contracts With Chinese-Linked Biotech Company

via Firing Line with Margaret Hoover | PBS on Youtube
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Conservative groups are pressuring Congress to pass a National Defense Appropriations Act (NDAA) amendment to ban contracts with China’s Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI) due to concerns about the CCP using genetic data for malign purposes.

The groups argue that the U.S. should protect its leadership in biotechnology and genomic data and prevent China’s broad data collection efforts.

They highlight the economic and national security implications and emphasize the importance of safeguarding Americans’ genomic information. (Trending: Donald Trump Confronts Bud Light CEO)

Rep. Mike Gallagher of Wisconsin accused BGI of collecting “genetic data on people all over the world, to include that of pregnant women, and uses it for research with the Chinese military.”

“The CCP will undoubtedly use the genetic data collected by BGI to further its malign aggression, potentially even to develop a bioweapon used to target the American people,” cautioned the Wisconsin republican.

Adding, “The good news is that Congress can do something about it.”

“Senator Hagerty and I are working to prohibit the U.S. government and those that contract with the U.S. government from acquiring genetic sequencing equipment from BGI and its subsidiaries in this year’s National Defense Authorization Amendment (NDAA),” explained Gallagher.

“I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle and in both chambers of Congress to protect Americans’ sensitive health information and include this critical provision in the final bill,” echoed the lawmaker.

“There is ample evidence that the CCP and its biotechnology national champions like” WuXi Biologics and BGI “are engaged in a systematic campaign to collect as much personal genomic data as possible to achieve the Party’s objectives,” wrote the conservative groups in their letter.

Additionally, “As recently reported by the Washington Post, China has been engaged in a genomic data collection effort for the past decade, ‘with a vast and growing government-owned repository that now includes genetic data drawn from millions of people around the world.”

“These efforts received a major boost from the COVID-19 pandemic when Chinese companies and institutes provided free or low-cost COVID-19 testing kits, laboratories, or gene-sequencing machines around the world to facilitate their efforts,” explained the conservative watchdogs.

This is all an attempt to block BGI and their subsidiaries.

“This is critical to thwart China’s broad data collection efforts, which threaten U.S. economic and national security leadership,” insisted the conservatives.

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