Did you miss key news from Commerce this week? Each week, we recap the latest U.S. Department of Commerce highlights spanning a wide range of issues promoting job creation and economic growth, programs, and events in one blog post.
Here are the key moments from Commerce: This Week
Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross
On July 15, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration awarded a $4.5 million grant to White County, Indiana, to construct a new wastewater treatment facility in the town of Wolcott.
“The Trump Administration is committed to updating critical and necessary infrastructure for the growth of American businesses,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This investment will benefit White County’s Mid-America Commerce Park to support existing employers and attract new businesses.”
On July 16, Secretary Ross issued a statement on the Schrems II Ruling and the Importance of EU-U.S. Data Flows
“While the Department of Commerce is deeply disappointed that the court appears to have invalidated the European Commission’s adequacy decision underlying the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield, we are still studying the decision to fully understand its practical impacts,” said Secretary Wilbur Ross. “We have been and will remain in close contact with the European Commission and European Data Protection Board on this matter and hope to be able to limit the negative consequences to the $7.1 trillion transatlantic economic relationship that is so vital to our respective citizens, companies, and governments. Data flows are essential not just to tech companies—but to businesses of all sizes in every sector. As our economies continue their post-COVID-19 recovery, it is critical that companies—including the 5,300+ current Privacy Shield participants—be able to transfer data without interruption, consistent with the strong protections offered by Privacy Shield.”
On July 21, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) released “Progress and Potential: 2020 Update on U.S. Women Inventor-Patentees,” a follow-up to its 2019 report on U.S. women inventors. The new report updates the previous findings based on a review of an additional nearly one million issued patents and three years of new data, and it provides further insights into the participation of women in America’s intellectual property systems.
“This report is a great achievement for the USPTO and an important stepping stone for women in America’s intellectual property systems,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “The USPTO has remained committed in their efforts to support women in innovation, and this positive momentum will continue to create a more inclusive intellectual property community.”
“Today’s report from the USPTO further highlights the important contributions of women to American innovation,” said Deputy Secretary of Commerce Karen Dunn Kelley. “I applaud the USPTO for their support of women inventors and their work to encourage women to take advantage of our nation’s intellectual property protections, the gold standard for the world. Everyone benefits when women fully participate in our innovation ecosystem.”
July 2020 Updates Show Department of Commerce Making Progress Toward Accomplishing All Agency Priority Goals
Commerce Department Adds Eleven Chinese Entities Implicated in Human Rights Abuses in Xinjiang to the Entity List
On July 20, the Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) added to the Entity List 11 Chinese companies implicated in human rights violations and abuses in the implementation of the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, forced labor, involuntary collection of biometric data, and genetic analyses targeted at Muslim minority groups from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).
“Beijing actively promotes the reprehensible practice of forced labor and abusive DNA collection and analysis schemes to repress its citizens,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This action will ensure that our goods and technologies are not used in the Chinese Communist Party’s despicable offensive against defenseless Muslim minority populations.”
Around the Bureaus
On July 13, the U.S. Census Bureau published, 2020 Census Results Inform Funding for Hospitals and Health Care, a new article as part of America Counts: Stories Behind the Numbers series. Results from the 2020 Census underway now will help federal, state, local, and tribal officials plan funding for health care services for the next decade. Health care companies also can use population statistics to help plan where to build new hospitals and clinics or expand existing ones.
On July 17, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration celebrated 30 years of NOAA's Teacher at sea program. Since 1990, more than 850 teachers have sailed aboard NOAA research ships as part of the groundbreaking program.
On July 20, Secretary Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration awarded a $1.5 million grant to the American Samoa Shipyard Services Authority, Pago Pago, American Samoa, to support the acquisition of equipment, machinery, and tools needed to modernize the Shipyard Service Facility located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone.
Read the latest trade enforcement and compliance news. The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Enforcement and Compliance unit within the International Trade Administration is responsible for vigorously enforcing U.S. trade laws and does so through an impartial, transparent process that abides by international rules and is based on factual evidence provided on the record. The strict enforcement of U.S. trade law is a primary focus of the Trump administration.
#ICYMI: On July 9, Secretary Ross joined President Donald Trump for the signing of Executive Order on the White House Hispanic Prosperity Initiative expanding efforts across the federal government to deliver educational and economic opportunity for Hispanic Americans.
The 2020 Census is happening now. You can respond online, by phone, or by mail. Respond today at 2020census.gov.