David Gross Discusses Executive Order Formalizing ‘Team Telecom’ Review Process
Amb. David A. Gross co-chair of Wiley’s Telecom, Media & Technology Practice, was quoted in an April 7 Communications Daily article about President Trump’s Executive Order to formalize and modify the multi-agency working group previously referred to as “Team Telecom.”
Specifically, on April 4, 2020, President Trump issued an Executive Order on Establishing the Committee for the Assessment of Foreign Participation in the United States Telecommunications Services Sector. The Executive Order (EO) formalizes, through the establishment of a Committee, the ad hoc working group known as “Team Telecom” which has been reviewing certain telecommunications transactions that fall under the jurisdiction of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). For years, the FCC has referred certain transactions to Team Telecom, to consider national security and law enforcement issues that may be raised by applications for FCC licenses and other grants of authority involving foreign ownership. This long-expected EO formalizes responsibilities and process for that review.
The EO will ensure “greater clarity” and a “better process” for Team Telecom reviews, which will give investors “more certainty going forward” about foreign investment in the U.S. telecom sector, Amb. Gross told Communications Daily. He noted that Team Telecom traditionally has had a more “ad hoc” approach to advising the FCC – generally with no time frame and a “fairly flexible process.” The EO will “provide much clearer roles” for the Executive branch to make FCC recommendations, he said.
Amb. Gross added that there has “been discussion for a long time,” including among FCC members, about a Team Telecom revamp. That discussion “finally ripened” into something that should draw bipartisan support, he said.
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