Technology transfer provisions represent a substantial windfall for our adversaries and one they will surely exploit
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The United States is the nation with the most to lose – from an economic and national security point of view – from the sort of obligatory technology transfer provisions contained in the Law of the Sea Treaty, including those that would be binding even if the 1994 Agreement has effect.
America has long imposed unilateral export control restrictions precisely for the purpose of preventing transfers that will result in harm to this country. U.S. accession to LOST would require a substantial liberalization, if not wholesale scrapping, of such important self-defense measures.
Actual or potential competitors/adversaries like China, Russia, state-sponsors of terror and even European “allies” understand full well what a technology windfall U.S. adherence to LOST could represent. It would be irresponsible, not to say foolish in the extreme, to believe that none of these parties will take advantage of the opportunity to reap that windfall, to our very considerable detriment.
Although the 1994 treaty modifications have toned down some of the most direct mandatory technology transfer requirements, the treaty still places at risk some very sensitive, and militarily useful, technology which may readily be misused by the navies of ocean mining states.