Summary: H.R.1407 — 100th Congress (1987-1988)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.1407. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (03/04/1987)

Trade Expansion Act of 1987 - Title I: Establishment of Department of Trade - Trade Policy and Reorganization Act of 1987 - Establishes the Department of Trade, to be administered by a Secretary of Trade (the Secretary) appointed by the President. Directs the Secretary, among other things, to: (1) coordinate U.S. policies for promoting beneficial international trade relationships; (2) negotiate U.S. international trade agreements; (3) protect American industry, agriculture, and labor from unfair or injurious foreign competition; (4) develop trade monitoring systems; (5) develop and implement U.S. policies concerning foreign investments; and (6) administer the U.S. Customs Service and maintain the U.S. tariff schedules.

Transfers to the Secretary all functions of: (1) the U.S. Trade Representative; (2) the Secretary of Commerce which relate to international trade and investment and to specified agencies and offices of the Department of Commerce; and (3) the President under chapter I of title II and chapter I of title III of the Trade Act of 1974. Transfers to the Department of Trade the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the U.S. International Trade Commission.

Amends the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to establish in the Executive Office of the President a Trade Policy Committee which shall assist the President in carrying out certain import relief functions pursuant to the Trade Act of 1974. (The Committee replaces the interagency trade organization established by such Act.) Establishes a Trade Negotiating Subcommittee which shall advise the Secretary on the management of international trade and investment negotiations.

Sets forth administrative provisions applicable to the Department of Trade.

Directs the Secretary to submit a report annually to the President for submission to the Congress on the Department's activities. Provides for the transfer of personnel, assets, records, and funding to correspond with the transfers of functions, offices, and agencies made by this Act.

Terminates: (1) the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative; (2) the International Trade Administration; (3) the Bureau of Industrial Economics; (4) the Bureau of Economic Analysis; (5) the U.S. Travel and Tourism Administration; and (6) the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Makes technical and conforming amendments to specified Acts to reflect the executive reorganization made by this Act.

Title II: Opening of Foreign Markets - Directs the President to take all actions that are necessary to: (1) enforce U.S. rights under any trade agreement to which Japan is a party; (2) obtain the elimination of trade practices which are inconsistent with or otherwise deny benefits to the United States under trade agreements to which Japan is a party and which are unjustifiable and burden or restrict U.S. commerce; and (3) offset the cumulative impact that lack of enforcement of U.S. trade rights and the continued existence of such trade practices have on the merchandise balance of trade between the United States and Japan. Requires the President to report to the Congress, within 45 days of enactment of this Act, on the actions that the President has decided to take during the first year of the three years following enactment of this Act. Sets forth a timetable for such actions. Authorizes the President to modify or revoke such actions only if specified conditions are met. Requires such actions by the President to ensure that U.S. exports to Japan during each of such three years equal the applicable export goals for such year.

Defines applicable export goal to mean, for the first year, the total value of U.S. exports to Japan during the year preceding enactment of this Act plus $4,000,000,000. Increases such goal for each of the following two years. Requires the President, if the applicable export goal is not met during a specified year, to take actions to reduce Japanese exports to the United States. Sets forth actions the President is authorized to take in order to increase the openness of markets in Japan (including imposing import quotas and making import inspections more rigorous).

Requires the Secretary to report to the Congress annually during such three year period on the extent to which the President's actions during the previous year met the requirements of the applicable export goals for such year.

Requires the Secretary to study and report to the President and the Congress on the causes and possible solutions to the trade imbalance between the United States and Japan. Requires the President to submit a response to the Secretary's report to the Congress within 30 days of receiving such report.

Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to require the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) to make an estimate in the annual report on trade barriers of the increase in value of U.S. exports that would result in the following three years if certain market access barriers were eliminated. Requires the USTR, in making such estimate, to take into account the international competitiveness of the goods or services involved.

Requires the Secretary, within 90 days of submitting the annual report on trade barriers to the Congress, to establish export goals for the next three years for certain foreign countries which have trade barriers to a significant portion of possible U.S. exports and which deny market access to those U.S. exports that are less able to petition for relief. Requires the President, if the export goal for a country is not met, to take all necessary actions to reduce the exports of that country to the United States by a specified amount. Requires the President to report to the Congress annually on such actions.

Transfers from the President to the Secretary the authority to: (1) determine whether U.S. action is appropriate to enforce U.S. rights under a trade agreement or to respond to certain foreign trade practices; (2) determine the appropriate additional import relief in such cases; and (3) determine any additional restrictions on service sector access authorizations. Transfers from the President to the Secretary the authority to take action on the Secretary's own motion.

Includes among the foreign trade practices that may trigger a U.S. response any act, policy, or practice that threatens to burden or restrict U.S. commerce. Sets forth a list of foreign acts, policies, and practices which burden U.S. commerce.

Authorizes the Secretary, in response to certain foreign trade practices, to: (1) enter into binding agreements that fully offset the burden on U.S. commerce of such practices; or (2) withdraw, or refrain from proclaiming, eligibility of a foreign country for preferential treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences.

Includes within the meaning of unreasonable foreign trade acts, policies, or practices any combination of unfair foreign trade acts, policies, or practices and any such acts, practices, or procedures that deny: (1) market opportunities (including protection of an industry in its formative stages); or (2) protection against anti-competitive practices.

Includes within the definition of "service sector access authorization" any authorization that gives access to the U.S. market to a foreign supplier of goods related to a service.

Directs the USTR, in determining whether to initiate an investigation of foreign trade practices, to consider the ability of the persons affected by such practices to prepare a petition for such an investigation.

Directs the Secretary to determine, within 90 days of the start of such an investigation, whether: (1) the United States is being denied its rights under any trade agreement; or (2) there is any unfair trade act, policy, or practice. Sets forth the actions to be taken by the Secretary based on such determination. Requires an import relief action to terminate after seven years if it has existed continuously for seven years and no request to extend the action is made during the last 60 days of such seven-year period. Requires the Secretary to review the effectiveness of such an import action if a request to extend the import relief is made.

Authorizes the President, if such import relief involves raising tariffs or imposing import restrictions, to negotiate a trade agreement providing compensation or to proclaim tariff changes to provide compensation for certain countries in order to meet U.S. international obligations.

Title III: Support for United States Exports - Subtitle A: Export Financing - Amends the Trade and Development Enhancement Act of 1983 to declare that one of the purposes of such Act is to establish a temporary tied aid credit program to combat the predatory concessional credit programs of foreign governments.

Directs the President to negotiate limits on partially untied aid credit. Changes the U.S. negotiating objectives to include references to partially untied aid credits.

Directs the Secretary to establish within the Department a program of tied aid credits for U.S. exports. Requires the program to be carried out in cooperation with private financial institutions or entities. (Currently the program is established within the Export-Import Bank and carried out in cooperation with the Agency for International Development (AID).) Sets forth financing methods that may be included in such program. Sets forth factors the Secretary shall consider in determining whether to provide financing with respect to a particular country or firm. Authorizes appropriations through FY 1988.

Requires the Secretary to seek the advice of the National Advisory Council on International Monetary and Financial Policies before approving financing under the tied aid credit program. Terminates the tied aid credit program on September 30, 1987.

Limits judicial review of actions by the Chairman of the Export-Import Bank and by the Secretary.

Changes the definition of "tied aid credit." Defines "partially untied aid credit." Deletes references to government-mixed credits and public-private cofinancing.

Subtitle B: Foreign Trade Practices - Amends the Export Administration Act of 1979 to make it unlawful for any U.S. person, in order to receive help in obtaining business with a foreign government or entity, corruptly to offer money or anything of value to a foreign official or a foreign political party, candidate, or party official. Prohibits a U.S. person from acting in U.S. interstate or foreign commerce with knowledge that a third party will make such an offer for such a purpose. Exempts from such prohibitions: (1) any payment made to expedite, or secure the performance of, a routine governmental action, other than an action to award business to a U.S. person; or (2) any payment which is permitted under the law of the country involved. Directs the Secretary of Commerce to issue guidelines and procedures for compliance with this Act. Requires the Secretary of Commerce to establish a procedure to provide responses to specific inquiries concerning compliance with this subtitle. Sets forth penalties for violations of this subtitle.

Requires the Secretary to review and report to the President and to specified congressional committees on the impact of the amendments made by this Act on the export activities of U.S. businesses.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that the President should pursue the negotiation of an international agreement governing payments made to foreign government or political party officials in order to receive help in obtaining business from that foreign government. Directs the President to report to the Congress within one year of enactment of this Act on those negotiations and other possible actions.

Subtitle C: Miscellaneous Provisions - Directs the Secretary to study and report to the Congress on: (1) U.S. laws that hamper U.S. ability to export goods and services; and (2) an estimate of the increase in exports if each such law were amended to promote exports.

Requires each Federal agency, before taking any major action that may affect international trade, to prepare and publish a report on the potential impact of such action on U.S. international trade and on the ability of U.S. firms to compete in foreign markets.

Requires the Director of the Congressional Budget Office to monitor, and study the potential impact of, legislation which may affect U.S. international trade and the ability of U.S. firms to compete in foreign markets.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that: (1) each U.S. Executive Director of a multilateral development bank should take specified actions to promote procurement opportunities for U.S. firms in foreign countries; and (2) a Foreign Commercial Officer should be assigned to each such Director to help promote such opportunities.

Requires the Secretary to negotiate agreements with State agencies that promote exports which will establish procedures to ensure consultation and coordination: (1) between the Department and such State agencies; and (2) among such State agencies. Requires the Secretary and the Secretary of Commerce to ensure that such State agencies have access to the trade information system developed under title IX of this Act.

Directs the Secretaries of State and Trade to review periodically the number of personnel assigned to U.S. missions abroad to determine whether an adequate number of such personnel are engaged in economic or commercial duties to aid U.S. exporters and businesses doing business outside the United States. Declares that the Secretaries should extend the length of assignment of such personnel in order to ensure greater continuity in promoting U.S. exports.

Requires annual reports from each major U.S. diplomatic mission to the President and the Congress on: (1) the strategy used by such mission to expand U.S. exports; and (2) the efforts of such mission to assist U.S. industries in expanding export sales and in improving their market position.

Title IV: Maintenance and Development of Agricultural Export Markets - Authorizes appropriations for research that would enhance the long-term competitiveness in world markets of U.S. agricultural commodities.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to monitor research and trade practices carried out by foreign countries to promote the export of agricultural commodities and to report annually to the Congress concerning: (1) trends in the comparative position of U.S. and foreign exports of farm commodities; (2) new research developments that may affect the competitiveness of U.S. farm commodities; (3) the level of U.S. and foreign subsidies provided to promote agricultural exports; and (4) the marketing in nonmarket economies of U.S. farm commodities.

Amends the Food Security Act of 1985 to direct the Secretary of Agriculture to provide farm commodities acquired by the Commodity Credit Corporation to improve the quality of grain exported from the United States.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to report annually to the Congress on the impact of actions of the USTR on the export of U.S. farm commodities.

Title V: Relief from Injury Caused by Import Competition - Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to allow one of the purposes of an import relief petition to be the desire to enhance competitiveness.

Includes among the economic factors to be considered in determining whether increased imports constitute a serious injury to a domestic industry the inability of a significant number of firms to operate domestic production facilities at a reasonable profit.

Adds to the factors to be considered in import relief investigations relating to whether increased imports are a threat of serious injury to a domestic industry.

Requires the International Trade Commission (ITC), in determining what domestic industry is affected by imports, to treat as part of the domestic industry only the domestic production of a domestic producer who also imports.

Prohibits considering imports of like or directly competitive articles by domestic producers as a factor indicating the absence of serious injury or threat of serious injury to a domestic industry.

Requires the ITC, in an import relief investigation, to consider factors other than imports which may cause injury or threaten injury to a domestic industry and to report on such factors to the President.

Permits the ITC to recommend both increases in import restrictions and adjustment assistance if the ITC finds that increased imports are causing a serious injury or threat of serious injury to a domestic industry. Requires the ITC to prepare for the President an estimate of the short-term and long-term effects of such increases in import duties or import restrictions on private and industrial consumers.

Directs the President to impose provisional import relief if critical circumstances exist (circumstances caused by a significant increase in imports over a short period of time in which a delay in the imposition of relief would cause damage to the domestic industry that would be difficult to remedy under the usual import relief measures).

Authorizes filing a petition with the Secretary of Agriculture for emergency import relief in addition to any petition filed with the ITC if the petition relates to imports of perishable products. Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to make a recommendation to the President within 14 days of receiving such petition on whether or not to take emergency action. Requires the Secretary to recommend emergency relief if the Secretary finds that emergency action is warranted and that increased imports of a perishable product are a substantial cause of serious injury or threat of serious injury to the competing domestic industry. Requires the President to decide, within seven days of receiving such recommendation, what, if any, import restrictions to impose on such imports. Provides for the termination of such emergency relief.

Requires the ITC to evaluate the effectiveness of import relief actions and to report on such evaluation to the President and the Congress.

Requires the USTR to establish a plan development group for an industry after the ITC begins an import relief investigation based upon a petition filed by firms, a union, or a group of workers that represent a significant portion of the domestic industry if the petitioners request the establishment of such a plan development group. Requires each such group (made up of government and private sector representatives) to prepare an assessment of current problems in the industry and a strategy to enhance its competitiveness. Sets forth information to be included in such assessment and strategy. Requires the assessment and strategy to be submitted, along with the opinions of the members of the plan development group on the viability of such strategy, to the petitioner within 120 days of the start of an ITC import relief investigation. Authorizes the petitioner, if the ITC finds that imports have caused serious injury to the domestic industry, to submit the assessment and strategy to the ITC on the day after the ITC makes such finding. Requires the Secretary of Trade to present to the ITC some of the opinions of Federal agencies on the viability of such strategy. Requires the ITC, upon submission of such assessment and strategy to the petitioner and before the ITC evaluates what effect such a strategy will have on the domestic industry, to try to obtain confidential commitments from the individual members of the domestic industry on their future actions. Requires the ITC to transmit such commitments to certain members of the Government to enable them to evaluate the assessment and strategy. Requires the President under certain circumstances to consider such confidential commitments, assessment and strategy, and recommendations of the interagency trade organization. Sets forth the actions the ITC must take if the ITC finds that increased imports are a substantial cause of or constitute a threat of serious injury to a domestic industry and if an adjustment assessment and strategy have been submitted.

Directs the President, in determining whether to provide import relief, to take into account the probable effectiveness of import relief as a means of promoting adjustment or modernization in order to improve competitive abilities.

Directs the President, if the President has received an assessment and strategy in connection with an injured or threatened industry, to: (1) provide the import relief found necessary by the ITC; (2) provide substantially equivalent import relief; or (3) submit to the Congress a draft of a bill making certain waivers and containing provisions implementing the import relief, if any, that the President has decided to take. Provides for expedited congressional consideration of such a bill. Requires the President to implement the import relief found necessary by the ITC if after 90 days such bill is not enacted.

Provides for publication of the assessment and strategy if import relief is provided. Requires a review committee to: (1) monitor actions taken by petitioners to improve the competitive position of the industry; (2) make recommendations for administrative actions to achieve the objectives of the assessment and strategy; and (3) submit to the Congress legislative recommendations. Provides for expedited consideration of legislative recommendations.

Requires the review committee to consult with members of the plan development group and with members of the domestic industry if the objectives and actions specified in the assessment and strategy are not being implemented or if the confidential commitments are not being kept. Authorizes the President to terminate or modify the import relief if, after the consultations, the review committee determines that such failure to implement the strategy or commitments is not justified by changed circumstances and has adversely affected overall implementation of the objectives set forth in the assessment and strategy.

Directs the President, before deciding whether to grant import relief, to consult with the interagency trade organization established pursuant to the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 and consider the recommendations of such organization.

Changes the import relief actions available to the President. Authorizes the President to proclaim a change in any "auctioned quantitative restriction" on imports of an article. (Current law refers to a "quantitative restriction" of imports.) Deletes the provision authorizing the President to negotiate orderly marketing agreements with foreign countries in order to provide import relief.

Includes among the import relief actions available to the President the right to: (1) initiate on an accelerated basis an antidumping or countervailing duty investigation; or (2) enter into multilateral negotiations to address problems not susceptible to unilateral solution.

Permits an import relief investigation into imports of an article that received import relief less than two years before the start of the new investigation if good cause is shown.

Sets forth the procedure for an antidumping or countervailing duty investigation which the President orders as a form of import relief.

Directs the President to impose import restrictions or increase import duties if multilateral negotiations ordered by the President as a form of import relief fail to provide relief from serious injury or the threat of serious injury within one year. Provides for expedited consideration of legislation implementing such import restrictions or import duty increases.

Requires the Secretary to issue import licenses in order to enforce certain quantitative limitations on imports. Requires such licenses to be auctioned to the highest bidder.

Requires the ITC to review an injury determination and its recommendations relating to the determination if: (1) the ITC has made a unanimous affirmative injury determination; (2) the President declined between January 1, 1984, and October 1, 1985, to prevent or remedy the injury or threat of injury found by the ITC; and (3) a petition for review is filed within one year of enactment of this Act. Requires the ITC, within 60 days of receiving such petition, to: (1) determine whether the injury should be reaffirmed or revoked; and (2) if the injury determination is reaffirmed, report such determination to the President and set forth the increase in import duty or the import restriction necessary to prevent the injury or threat of injury. Requires the ITC to publish such report. Requires the President to decide whether to impose such import relief within 30 days of receiving such report.

Requires the Secretary to: (1) maintain a list of all products, technologies, and industries that are critical to U.S. defense or economic security; (2) conduct studies on imports of such technology and the effect of such imports on U.S. security; and (3) report annually to the Congress on such list and the results of such studies.

Title VI: Resistance to Predatory Trade Practices - Directs the Secretary of Trade to develop criteria for identifying foreign industries that are engaging in predatory competition against U.S. industries. Requires the Secretary to monitor and report to the Congress semiannually on: (1) the identity of each such foreign industry; and (2) the aggregate volume of, and rate of, U.S. sales of each such foreign industry.

Requires the Secretary of Commerce to submit to the Congress notice of excessive increase in the sales of a product of a predatory foreign industry. Defines excessive increase in sales to mean an increase more than ten percent greater than the sales rate that would be expected based on the product's sales rate during the preceding three years. Provides for expedited congressional consideration of legislation to impose or increase the duty on such a product.

Amends the Tariff Act of 1930 to declare that the unauthorized importation (or sale) of articles into the United States that infringe a valid U.S. patent, copyright, trademark, maskwork, or trade secret is unfair and has the effect of destroying or substantially injuring a U.S. industry or impairing the establishment of such industry. Permits any person to petition the ITC for the issuance of an order to exclude such articles, during its investigation, from entry into the United States. Sets forth: (1) civil penalties for violations under this Act; and (2) procedures for the modification or recission of an ITC order under this Act.

Repeals a specified section of the Tariff Act of 1930 relating to the importation of products produced under a process covered by claims of unexpired patent.

Directs the Secretary to monitor, and report to the Congress on, foreign investments in the United States in order to identify significant investments in the United States that are being contemplated by foreign countries that engage in unfair foreign trade practices. Provides for expedited consideration of a bill imposing temporary restraints on certain foreign investments in the United States.

Requires the Secretary to study, and report to the Congress on, the impact on the competitiveness of U.S. firms of the financial and regulatory systems of certain foreign countries that impose barriers or restrictions on trade.

Requires the Secretary to monitor, and report to the Congress on, countries that infringe or violate or allow firms in such countries to infringe or violate U.S. patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, or maskworks. Provides for expedited consideration of bills that: (1) exclude from the United States students from a country that engages in such infringements; (2) restrict access to U.S. research by such foreign country and its citizens; or (3) prohibit export licensing of technology to such country and its citizens.

Process Patent Amendment of 1987 - Amends the patent laws to make it an infringement of patent to use, sell, or import into the United States without authority a product produced by a patented process.

Directs the Secretary to report to the Congress annually for five years on the effect such restriction has on the importation of ingredients for U.S. manufacturing.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that the amount of funds appropriated to the Customs Service should be sufficient to provide enough personnel to enforce the customs laws.

Title VII: International Trade Negotiations - Directs the Secretary to request the contracting parties to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) to join the United States in ministerial sessions preparatory to a new round of negotiations. Sets forth the goals of such sessions, including: (1) strengthening GATT articles in certain areas and strengthening the GATT as an institution; and (2) tightening GATT enforcement measures.

Directs the Secretary to initiate negotiations to enhance U.S. agricultural exports and to eliminate barriers to such exports.

Title VIII: International Debt Crisis - Requires the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Trade, and the Federal Reserve Board to study and report to the Congress on the options for improving the international debt crisis and on the consequences of flexibility in repayment of international debt under certain conditions.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that a satisfactory resolution of the debt crisis and a resumption of economic growth in the developing world require that: (1) the products of debtor countries have reasonable access to the markets of industrialized countries; and (2) industrialized countries benefitting from U.S. defense provide greater financial commitment to the international organizations aiding debtor countries.

Directs the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Secretary of Agriculture to study the feasibility of implementing a Cooley Loan Program and to develop a list of those less developed countries in which Cooley Loan Program activities might be conducted. Sets forth the requirements for a Cooley Loan Program.

Title IX: Trade Information - Directs the Secretary, through the International Trade Administration, to develop and maintain an effective system to collect and disseminate information on international trade to U.S. exporters and State agencies that promote exports. Sets forth information to be included in such system.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program to provide international trade advice and assistance to U.S. businesses.

Title X: Economic Growth and Trade Expansion - Directs the President to initiate negotiations with foreign countries in order to: (1) coordinate macroeconomic adjustments; (2) base their economic growth on a balance of foreign and domestic demand; and (3) ensure that such foreign countries pursue a pro-growth strategy to resolve the international debt crisis.