Trump administration preparing to require that some essential drugs be made in US: report

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The White House is preparing to require that some essential drugs be made in the U.S. as the Trump administration tries to limit dependency on China for medical supplies, sources told CNBC.

White House trade advisor Peter Navarro previously proposed a similar executive order earlier in the year. 

Navarro’s order, proposed in mid-March, would streamline regulatory approvals for “American-made” drugs and impose similar Food and Drug Administration (FDA) restrictions on U.S. production facilities as those abroad. 

It will also encourage government agencies to only buy American-made medical products.

It is unclear if the executive order the unnamed sources referred to is the same as Navarro’s. 

The order could reportedly come as soon as Friday. 

According to the FDA, 90 percent of drugs in the U.S. are imported, and the vast majority of those are from China. Lawmakers and administration officials have sounded the alarm over potential supply chain issues that could arise if the country continues to depend on China for medical resources. 

Trump told workers at a distribution center in Pennsylvania on Thursday that he signed an executive order giving the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation the ability to issue low-interest loans to companies producing supplies to combat the pandemic, according to NPR

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), a ranking member of the House Foreign Relations Committee, issued a statement Thursday applauding the president’s move. 

For far too long the United States has relied on China to produce essential goods, such as medicine, medical supplies and Personal protective equipment,” McCaul said in a statement. “We can’t bet Americans’ health and security on the potential malign decisions of our strategic adversary, the Chinese Communist Party.”

Updated 12:21 a.m. 

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