EXCLUSIVE: Sen. James Lankford Introduces Bill To Cut China Out Of Key Supply Chain

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Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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Republican Oklahoma Sen. James Lankford introduced legislation on Friday intended to limit American reliance on Chinese pharmaceutical ingredients.

The Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Security Act, obtained exclusively by the Daily Caller, encourages the U.S. and allied countries to take steps to reduce the impact of China on pharmaceutical supply chains. It directs the Food and Drug Administration commissioner and U.S. Trade Representative to issue a report explaining which drugs are most exposed to Chinese supply chains, either raw materials or manufacturing and instructs those officials to come up with alternative ways of securing the drugs.

“One of the many lessons we should have learned from the COVID-19 pandemic is we cannot depend on China for our pharmaceuticals,” Lankford said in a statement to the Daily Caller. “When the US is reliant on communist China for energy or essential drugs, it is a serious national security threat. Our senior adults, kids, and the chronically ill need us to produce our own pharmaceuticals here in the US or at least import finished products and components from our allies. We can and should make this transition as soon as possible to safeguard the health security of the American people. My bill gets us going down that path.”

Read the bill here:

Lankford Pharmaceuticals Supply Chain Security Act by Michael Ginsberg on Scribd

U.S. pharmaceutical imports from China have risen more than 655% since 2016, according to a report from the Atlantic Council. China is the U.S.’s fourth-largest supplier, behind Ireland, Germany, and Switzerland. China controls raw material extraction in both Asia and Africa through its Belt and Road Initiative. The country grants loans to developing nations in exchange for mineral rights. (RELATED: Medical Expert Blames China For National Drug Shortage, Tells Tucker Carlson The FDA Is ‘Sitting Limply By’)

Chinese investors have targeted Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, which has lithium and copper deposits estimated at over $1 trillion. Lithium is a key ingredient in drugs that treat conditions like bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder, while copper is used to treat illnesses like anemia, cholera and dysentery.

Other congressional Republicans have sought to cut China out of the pharmaceutical supply chain. Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher introduced legislation in 2022 that would have completely banned the federal government from purchasing pharmaceutical products and ingredients from China by 2024, although ban waivers could be issued by 2026.