The secretaries of Homeland Security and Commerce will work together on the one-year review of information and communications technology (ICT) industrial base supply chains ordered by President Biden earlier this week.

That’s according to the text of the president’s executive order (EO) issued late on Feb. 24. The EO sets in motion year-long reviews of supply chain and industrial base risks for the ICT sector, defense industrial base (DIB), energy sector industrial base, public health and biological preparedness industrial base, transportation industrial base, and supply chains for agricultural commodities and food production.

The EO specifies that the ICT sector review will include an examination of the “industrial base for the development of ICT software, data, and associated services.”

For the review of DIB supply chains to be conducted by the Secretary of Defense, the EO says that the process “shall identify areas where civilian supply chains are dependent upon competitor nations,” as defined by the secretary.

The reviews for all six sectors will include a number of risks that could impact supply chains, including “defense, intelligence, cyber, homeland security, health, climate, environmental, natural, market, economic, geopolitical, human-rights or forced-labor risks that may disrupt, strain, compromise, or eliminate the supply chain,” the order says.

The reviews will also include “risks posed by supply chains’ reliance on digital products that may be vulnerable to failures or exploitation,” and risks posed by the failure to develop domestic sources.

Speaking at the White House yesterday, President Biden said that he and Vice President Harris had “a very productive meeting with a bipartisan group of senators and House members to address an issue of both concern to our economic security, as well as our national security: the resilience and reliability of our critical supply chains.”

“This is a critical area where Republicans and Democrats agreed it was one of the best meetings – it’s the best meeting I think we’ve had so far, although we’ve only been here about five weeks. But it was like the old days – people actually are on the same page,” President Biden said.

“This is about making sure the United States can meet every challenge we face in this new era -pandemics, but also in defense, cybersecurity, climate change, and so much more,” he said. “And the best way to do that is by protecting and sharpening America’s competitive edge by investing here at home.”

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John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.