US House to launch bipartisan select committee on China

The US House of Representatives has decided to set up a committee to head off alleged economic and military threats from China.

Lawmakers voted on Tuesday to establish the Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party. The House, which has just come under the control of the Republican Party as a result of last year's midterm election, made the decision with a bipartisan majority.

New House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had pledged to have the committee set up during his election campaign.

The new panel will conduct investigations and submit policy proposals to reduce economic dependence on China, bring supply chains back to the US, and secure intellectual property.

McCarthy said ahead of the vote that "the threat posed by Communist China is serious" and that creating the select committee is the "best avenue for addressing it."

He added that the US will no longer be dependent on China, and no longer as vulnerable.

Observers say the House under Republican control is likely to step up pressure on President Joe Biden's administration to adopt a more hardline policy toward Beijing.