Industrial Base:

Adequacy of Information on the U.S. Defense Industrial Base

NSIAD-90-48: Published: Nov 15, 1989. Publicly Released: Dec 20, 1989.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the adequacy of official information on the U.S. defense industrial base.

GAO found that: (1) the Department of Defense (DOD) had no reliable system to identify foreign dependence for parts, components, and technologies essential to defense production; (2) there was no coordinated system to increase federal policymakers' awareness of or access to defense industrial base data; (3) DOD and the Department of Commerce recently began using interim consultation procedures so that Commerce could provide input into DOD industrial base impact assessments; and (4) a 1986 Joint Logistics Commanders' report reviewed 13 DOD weapon systems and found dependencies on foreign sources for 8 of them, with severe problems for 6. GAO also found that the DOD approach to defense industrial base data collection and analysis provided information on general industry sectors and foreign dependencies through special studies, but was inefficient and of limited effectiveness because it did not: (1) provide adequate information on DOD subcontract awards to foreign sources; (2) facilitate the identification of acquisition strategies so that DOD would know which domestic sources to maintain for particular items; or (3) shorten the DOD decisionmaking process for acquiring weapon systems, subsystems, and components by facilitating market research, as a more systematic approach would.

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