H.R. 1704 would require the Department of State, and in some instances the Department of Commerce, to promote U.S. business interests overseas. The bill also would require the Comptroller General to report to the Congress on U.S. economic and commercial diplomacy.
In particular, the bill would require the State department to:
Train certain officers of the Foreign Service to advocate for U.S. businesses and economic policy,
Report annually to the Congress on its activities to promote U.S. economic and business interests overseas,
Coordinate with the Department of Commerce to produce annual guides to countries and regions for U.S. companies interested in doing business overseas,
Coordinate with trade-promotion agencies at the state level, and
Negotiate with other countries to establish international standards for government-sponsored investments in infrastructure in foreign countries.
On the basis of information about the existing training for the Foreign Service, ongoing federal efforts to promote U.S. businesses and economic policy, and the cost of similar reporting requirements, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost less than $500,000 each year and total $2 million over the 2019-2024 period; such spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated funds.