The Interagency Study on Military Trade Offsets

Gao ID: 130162 June 18, 1986

GAO discussed its investigation of an interagency study on the impact of offsets in defense-related exports. GAO found that the study failed to: (1) include nondefense industry sectors; (2) distinguish between the companies sampled, companies that reported military sales dollar values, and companies that responded to the specific offset questions; (3) assess the long-term impact of offsets; (4) include significant offset data information, standardized response formats, and defined terms; or (5) qualify its findings to show that offsets might affect certain industrial sectors not included in the study and did not measure long-term effects. GAO also found that two of the five principal agencies involved in producing the interagency report disagreed with the report because it: (1) added no new information on offsets; (2) contained numerous unsubstantiated assertions, erroneous conclusions, and contradictory statements; and (3) failed to objectively present the available data.

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