Industry input on China strengthens OIDA testimony to Congress

March 31, 2009
March 31, 2009--Michael Lebby, president of the Optoelectronics Industry Development Association (OIDA; Washington, DC), testified March 24th at a Congressional hearing on China's Industrial Policy and Its Impact on U.S. Companies, Workers and the American Economy. According to Lebby, "OIDA received input from over 300 industry leaders on issues related to Chinese industrial policy and its effect on our industry."

March 31, 2009--Michael Lebby, president of the Optoelectronics Industry Development Association (OIDA; Washington, DC), testified March 24th at a Congressional hearing on China's Industrial Policy and Its Impact on U.S. Companies, Workers and the American Economy (see www.laserfocusworld.com/articles/355354). According to Lebby, "OIDA received input from over 300 industry leaders on issues related to Chinese industrial policy and its effect on our industry. This input significantly increased the value of the OIDA testimony to the Commission."

Chaired by Commissioners Patrick A. Mulloy and Daniel M. Slane, Lebby offered OIDA's perspective on the panel discussing China's Nanotechnology and Optoelectronics Industries. Lebby outlined a number of approaches needed to strengthen the U.S. optoelectronics (OE) industry and listed the areas in optoelectronics that need focus and support to generate, maintain, and retain skill jobs in the U.S. OIDA members comprise U.S. based entrepreneurial start-ups, pre-IPO, public, and trans-national corporations--the majority of which use Asian, predominantly Chinese, manufacturing for packaging and assembly in their optoelectronic product lines.

OIDA's position included several recommendations to strengthen the U.S. optoelectronics industry including direct, focused optoelectronics government support through existing agencies. Lebby noted that commercial R&D in optoelectronics has waned significantly over the last two decades, creating a huge chasm in commercial, industrial optoelectronics research. "It's simply missing, gone; we just don't do it anymore--the chain is broken," he said (see www.laserfocusworld.com/articles/330750.

Lebby explained that OIDA members stress the importance of commercial, industrial, optoelectronics research and development, which takes new concepts from academia and turns them into products. Lebby noted, "If our government agencies implement focused optoelectronics programs that allow our fledging optoelectronics industry to take the great academic ideas and turn them into products, we can design our next generation products and even create efficient manufacturing plants here in the U.S."

Lebby detailed 10 areas in optoelectronics in which existing government agencies could create focused commercial research programs that would strengthen the U.S. optoelectronics industry, all within the agencies' current charters.

For more information, go to www.oida.org.

--Posted by Gail Overton, [email protected]; www.laserfocusworld.com.

A complete review of the China testimony from SPIE and OIDA will appear in the April 15th issue of Optoelectronics Report. Please subscribe to Optoelectronics Report at www.optoelectronicsreport.com, the twice-monthly eNewsletter from the editors at Laser Focus World and BioOptics World that covers both national and international business news and market trends and tracks technology advances to interpret their business implications.

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