In September 2023, select leaders participating in the G20 Summit announced plans to develop the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC). The project aims to develop two integrated corridors – one connecting India to the Arabian Gulf, and one connecting the Arabian Gulf to Europe – with new ship-to-rail transit networks, undersea telecommunication cables, and a hydrogen energy pipeline.
While lacking binding agreement at this time, IMEC participating governments – the United States, India, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the European Union, France, Germany, and Italy – are already touting its potential.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expects IMEC “will drive sustainable development for the entire world.”
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s 2023 State of the Union address emphasized the shared interest of the participating governments to make trade “faster, shorter, cleaner.” She anticipates that IMEC “will make trade between Indian and Europe 40% faster.”
Saudi Arabia’s Investment Minister Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al-Falih expressed IMEC’s potential “to be more significant and relevant” than the Silk Road “because it’s going to be about new energy, data, connectivity, human resources, aviation routes, and it’s about aligning countries that are of the same mind and same vision.”
As proposed, IMEC could be a boon for the United States, which has long sought to counter the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) launched by the People’s Republic of China in 2013. The IMEC announcement builds on the G7’s June 2023 pledge to raise $600 billion in private and public funds over five years for infrastructure projects in developing countries to counter BRI, and according to U.S. President Joe Biden demonstrate “the concrete benefits of partnering with democracies.” IMEC’s objective to facilitate hydrogen energy transports also aligns with the United States and EU’s broader strategic interest to transition Europe away from Russian fossil fuels.
The US Constitution provides that “No money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law” (Article I, Section 9, Clause 7). Congress maintains the power of the purse, and federal government agencies and programs reliant on discretionary budget authority experience funding gaps if appropriations expire prior to the enactment of new appropriations measures. With limited exceptions, the Antideficiency Act, court and Department of Justice opinions, and associated guidance generally prohibit continued agency and program operations when funding gaps occur. Should a funding gap last for a day or longer, federal government agencies and programs impacted by the lack of discretionary funds may shut down.
Over the past several weeks, Congressional Republicans have indicated they are gearing up to tackle various health policy issues – and have offered health stakeholders the opportunity to provide feedback and their expertise in policy development.
On August 25, Republicans on the House of Representatives’ Committee on the Budget established a “Health Care Task Force.” Chaired by Rep. Michael Burgess, MD (R-TX), the Task Force is charged with “find[ing] solutions to reduce health care spending, examin[ing] opportunities to modernize and personalize the health care system, and support[ing] policies to fuel innovation and increase patient access to quality and affordable care.” The Task Force released an open letter, requesting: (1) feedback on regulatory, statutory, or implementation barriers that could be addressed to reduce health care spending; (2) information on efforts to promote and incorporate innovation into programs like Medicare to reduce health care spending and improve patient outcomes; (3) comments on the Congressional Budget Office’s modeling capabilities on health care policies, including limitations or improvements to such analyses and processes; (4) examples of evidence-based, cost-effective preventive health measures or interventions that can reduce long term health costs; and (5) recommendations to reduce improper payments in federal health care programs. Responses are due October 15, 2023.
With Labor Day behind us, Congress returns to Washington with a packed agenda. One month now stands between lawmakers and the end of the government’s fiscal year. And Congress has only four months to tackle various end-of-year deadlines. From domestic policy discussions to international relations, we look back at the first eight months of 2023 and provide our assessment of what Congress will – and will not – be able to accomplish this year.
The White House has announced long-awaited final guidance to federal agencies to implement domestic content and manufacturing requirements in federally funded infrastructure projects.
The Biden Administration guidance applies broadly to the use of iron, steel, and other common construction materials and products and, as a result, is expected to have broad implications for awardees of federal funding, prospective applicants, contractors, and suppliers.
This report provides a snapshot of the U.S. Executive Branch priorities via daily schedules and the prior day’s press releases.
The President and The First Lady are in Reno, Nevada, and have no public events scheduled.
Statement from President Joe Biden on Cancer Moonshot Announcement
Press Release: As Part of President Biden’s Unity Agenda, Biden Cancer Moonshot Announces Launch of ARPA-H’s CUREIT Project Led by Emory University to Develop New Tools to Strengthen the Immune System and Save Lives