China: Possible Missile Technology Transfers from U.S. Satellite Export Policy- Actions and Chronology [Updated January 11, 2002] [open pdf - 659KB]
"Congress has been concerned about whether U.S. firms, in exporting satellites, provided expertise to China for use in its ballistic missile and space programs and whether the Administration's policies might facilitate transfers of military-related technology to China. This CRS Report discusses security concerns, policy changes, congressional action, and a chronology of major developments since 1988. Some critics opposed satellite exports to China, while others were concerned that the Clinton Administration relaxed export controls and monitoring of commercial satellites in moving the licensing authority from the State Department to Commerce in 1996. A range of concerns were prompted by 'New York Times' reports in April 1998 that the Justice Department began a criminal investigation into whether Loral Space and Communications Ltd. and Hughes Electronics Corp. violated export control laws. The companies are said to have provided expertise that China could use to improve the accuracy and reliability of its future ballistic missiles, including their guidance systems. At least three classified studies reportedly found that U.S. national security was harmed. Congress and the Justice Department have also investigated Hughes' review of China's launch failure on January 26, 1995. Congress may watch for any new Presidential waivers or licenses for exports of satellites and any review of U.S. policy to export satellites to China."
CRS Report for Congress, 98-485