PALLONE ASSAILS BUSH ADMINISTRATION APPROVAL OF PROPOSAL TO TURN PORTS OVER TO UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) issued the following statement today in response to the Bush administration signing off on a deal that allows Dubai Ports World, which is owned by the government of the United Arab Emirates, to buy a British shipping company whose subsidiary operates ports in New Jersey and four other states.
"Congress needs to step in and prevent the Bush administration from moving ahead with this serious threat to our national security. I have little faith that the Bush administration asked all the pertinent questions before it signed off on this ill-advised proposal. Protecting our ports is simply too important to outsource to foreign countries. Congress must pass legislation that keeps ownership of American ports out of the hands of foreign governments.
"Congress must also recognize the inadequacies that currently exist in securing our ports. It's simply outrageous that five years after 9/11 only five percent of all containers entering our ports are ever inspected. I hope this preposterous deal serves as a wake-up call to many of my colleagues in Congress that we need to dedicate more resources to ensuring our ports are no longer vulnerable."