Published

February 15, 2022

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WASHINGTON, D.C.—Antitrust legislation would weaken U.S. technology companies’ ability to compete in the global marketplace and undermine our national security interests, according to a new report from the U.S Chamber of Commerce. 

The report, “U.S. Antitrust Legislative Proposals: A Global Perspective,” provides a comparative assessment of innovation policy approaches in the U.S., China, and the European Union, and outlines how current antitrust proposals in the U.S. would put American companies at a distinct disadvantage. 

“Today, American companies lead the world because they have the freedom to invest, innovate, scale, and compete. That freedom would be significantly curtailed under proposed changes to our antitrust laws,” said U.S. Chamber Executive Vice President and Chief Policy Officer Neil Bradley. “This legislation would hamstring American companies’ ability to compete in the global marketplace while giving our foreign competitors the upper hand. It is the definition of self-defeating.” 

The United States is locked in a race with China and other leading world powers to develop and deploy the technologies of the future such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and semiconductors.  

According to the report, China is pursuing a comprehensive regulatory agenda to dominate technologies of the future while constraining American companies. Chinese companies are heavily subsidized and state-owned companies are overwhelmingly exempt from anti-monopoly law. China’s tech giants operate in a protected domestic environment insulated from foreign competition and are encouraged to aggressively expand into overseas markets. 

In Europe, the EU is pursuing a path of “tech sovereignty” through a range of industrial policies—including the Digital Markets Act, AI Act, Data Act, and the Gaia-X project to create a “European” cloud—all of which are designed to boost European technology firms and potentially limit the success of American companies. 

While China and the EU aggressively pursue industrial policies to ensure their own dominance, U.S. lawmakers are considering antitrust proposals that would handicap American companies. 

The report details how proposed U.S. antitrust legislation could force companies to provide their competitors with equal access to their platform; require them to share user data with other companies; prevent them from making certain new acquisitions or investments; and could even break them apart into smaller businesses, which means less money for cutting-edge research and development, and diminished U.S. technology leadership. 

Bradley concluded, “Instead of re-writing antitrust law to punish American companies, the U.S. government should focus instead on vigorous enforcement of current law and on vocally opposing and effectively countering foreign regimes that unfairly target U.S. companies.” 

To read the full report, visit uschamber.com/antitrust.