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Background on Lawsuit On November 2, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed the suit brought by a class of child laborers who mine cobalt in the Democratic Republic of Congo (“DRC”) against several US tech companies under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (“TVPRA”) and several common law based causes of action. TVPRA allows victims of human trafficking and certain other crimes such as forced labor to bring civil claims…

On October 20, the House of Representatives passed five bills with overwhelming bipartisan support that aim to promote supply chain and network security. This post will focus on two bills directed towards the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”). While these legislative measures are directed towards a U.S. government entity, and thus may not (on their face) appear applicable to corporate supply chains, if enacted, these bills could result in changes to laws, regulations, and policies down…

On October 20, the House of Representatives passed five bills with overwhelming bipartisan support that aim to promote supply chain and network security. This post will focus on one bill directed to the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”), and two bills directed to the Department of Commerce (“DOC”). While these legislative measures are directed towards U.S. government entities, and thus may not (on their face) appear applicable to corporate supply chains, if enacted, these bills…

On 19 October 2021, the EU Commission published its 2022 Work Programme (the “Programme“), which sets out the key goals that the EU Commission hopes to achieve in 2022. Chief amongst these is a desire to make “A Europe Fit for the Digital Age”, with a key proposal to achieve this being a possible “European Chips Act”. In the Programme, the EU Commission has stated that it will publish a proposal for a European Chips Act (the…

On August 19, 2021, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) published a notice of proposed rulemaking (the “NPRM”) discussing potential changes it is considering making to its equipment authorization and competitive bidding programs to restrict the use of telecommunications and video surveillance equipment and services produced or provided by five Chinese companies. Those changes could further narrow the availability and use of such equipment in the United States, and restrict companies that accept financing from two…

On January 19, 2021, the US Commerce Department (“Commerce”) published an interim final rule (“Interim Rule”) to implement Executive Order 13873, “Securing the Information and Communications Technology and Services (“ICTS”) Supply Chain.” The Interim Rule was issued following the public comment period’s closure on January 10, 2021 on the proposed rules issued on November 27, 2019 (“Proposed Rules”). For more information on the Proposed Rules and the Interim Rule, please see our blog posts here and here. When it requested comments on…

As part of Europe’s economic recovery, the EU Commission has acknowledged the trading bloc’s technological and strategic dependencies will need to be addressed. The EU Commission identified a number products imported into the EU on which the EU is highly dependent in notably sensitive sectors. The EU Commission also performed six in-depth reviews on the origin of strategic dependencies and their impact on importation. The EU Commission concluded that it will continue to work on…

The Biden Administration has taken some initial steps towards identifying vulnerabilities in the semiconductor manufacturing and advanced packaging supply chain, which was one of the four critical supply chains addressed in President Biden’s February 24, 2021 Executive Order on “America’s Supply Chains” (“the Supply Chain EO”). As detailed in our March 2, 2021 blog post, the Supply Chain EO requires relevant government agencies in these four critical areas to submit a report within 100 days…

A key challenge of supply chain compliance management is access to reliable real-time information.  Apps and technology tools can offer a possible solution, though they also come with some risks. There is an increasing array of data analytics products utilizing data on the market that seek to support supply chain compliance by providing up-to-date data and other analytics to help businesses navigate increasingly complex supply chain compliance issues. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen even more…

Blockchain technology was born in the midst of the financial crisis and proposed as a means of reliably transferring a store of value without using a bank or other financial intermediary. Bitcoin was the first such blockchain token, and multiple cryptocurrencies have followed. But blockchain use cases extend far beyond the financial world, and some of the more creative uses of blockchain technology have emerged in the supply chain. The numerous benefits of blockchain to…