Hudson Institute hosted a one-day conference, sponsored by the global aerospace and defense company Finmeccanica, to examine the implications of legislation (Buy American Acts) that limits Pentagon purchases of military equipment from non-U.S. manufacturers, particularly restrictions on military procurement from companies based in allied countries.
The conference consisted of keynote speeches and two panel discussions. The first panel discussion examined obstacles to cooperation between allies on the research and development of new weapons and systems, while the second panel will focus specifically on technology transfers and export controls. The conference also addressed macro issues, such as economic gains and losses from the current system as compared to alternative systems and the growing concern that the armed forces of U.S. allies, especially in Western Europe, are increasingly lagging behind the United States technological superiority on the battlefield. One of these speakers was Thomas J. Donohue.
Thomas J. Donohue is president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing 3 million companies, associations, state and local chambers, and American Chambers of Commerce abroad. Since assuming his position in 1997, Donohue has built the Chamber into a lobbying and political force with expanded influence across the globe.
Donohue established the Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR), which has won significant legal reforms in the courts, at the state and federal levels, and in elections for state attorneys general and Supreme Court judges.
The Chamber’s lobbyists, policy experts, and communicators have helped secure many legislative victories, including major tax cuts, more sensible workplace and environmental regulations, and increased funding for transportation. The Chamber has advanced the business argument on outsourcing and the need for balance in applying new capital markets and accounting rules, among other issues.
On the international front, the Chamber has become a leader in knocking down trade barriers, winning new free trade agreements, and fighting protectionism both at home and abroad.
Donohue serves on three corporate boards of directors. In addition, he is a member of the President’s Council on the 21st Century Workforce as well as the President’s Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations.
Donohue is president of the Center for International Private Enterprise, a program of the National Endowment for Democracy dedicated to the development of market-oriented institutions around the world.