Summary: S.2736 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Public Law No: 115-409 (12/31/2018)

Asia Reassurance Initiative Act of 2018

This bill lays out strategies for promoting U.S. security and economic interests and values in the Indo-Pacific region, which spans from the west coast of India to the west coast of the United States. It authorizes funds to be appropriated for implementing such strategies and cites China's actions and claims in the South China Sea, North Korea's development of nuclear capabilities, and the increased presence of international terrorist organizations in Southeast Asia as particular concerns.

The bill authorizes to be appropriated $1.5 billion each fiscal year from 2019 to 2023 for the Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the Department of Defense. Appropriated funds shall be used for various goals, including to:

  • advance U.S. foreign policy interests in the region;
  • improve the defense capacity and resiliency of partner nations;
  • build new counterterrorism partnership programs in Southeast Asia;
  • strengthen partner nations' democratic systems; and
  • ensure that regulatory environments in partner nations are transparent, open, and free of corruption.

Appropriated funds shall also be used to counter China's attempts to undermine the international system. The funds shall not be used for various programs, such as training programs for the armed forces of Burma (Myanmar).

The bill authorizes to be appropriated $100 million for each fiscal year from 2019 to 2023 to work with nations in the region to counter cybersecurity threats.

The bill authorizes to be appropriated funds for various economic-related goals, including to develop a comprehensive economic engagement framework with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, to strengthen intellectual property protections in the region, and to encourage countries to implement national energy strategies.

The bill authorizes to be appropriated $210 million each fiscal year from 2019 to 2023 for activities to promote democracy, strengthen civil society, human rights, rule of law, and accountability in the region. Appropriated funds shall be made available for efforts to promote democracy and human rights in China and to support cultural preservation and development activities in Tibet.

The bill affirms the United States' commitment to its partnerships with various countries, as well as Taiwan.