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Senator Rubio Seeks to Shut Down Confucius Institutes Funding Loophole

Updated: Aug 1, 2023

9 June 2023 – The US Department of Defense (DoD) established a Confucius Institute Waiver Program (CIWP) earlier this year to allow US universities that host Confucius Institutes to apply for a waiver to receive DoD funding. In response, US Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the No Federal Funding for CCP Spying and Persuasion in Education Settings (SPIES) Act, which would close the CIWP funding loophole and prohibit the DoD from funding universities and international institutions of higher education with Confucius Institutes.

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), said:

U.S. taxpayer dollars should not be benefiting the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its murderous regime. Confucius Institutes, which are directed by Beijing, have plagued college campuses in our nation with the CCP’s propaganda. There is no reason why the DoD should support these institutes.”

Mark Clifford, President of the Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation, said:

“We welcome this bill by Senator Rubio. There is no reason the DoD, as the entity responsible for safeguarding US national security, should provide funding for part of the Chinese Communist Party’s global spy apparatus. This legislation would protect the DoD, US and other countries around the world from the malign influence of Beijing. Government leaders around the world should continue to take action to ensure that Confucius Institutes do not infiltrate higher education institutions that should hold democratic values dear.”

The Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation with the Henry Jackson Society produced a report that investigates Confucius Institutes throughout the UK. The report finds that Confucius Institutes in British universities have received more than £33 million in funding from Chinese sources. The report advises the British government to investigate the staff recruitment practises of Confucius Institutes, to allocate funding for China studies in British universities, and to introduce legislation to ban Confucius Institutes in the UK.

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