Summary: H.R.1724 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Conference report filed in House (11/26/1991)

Declares that the Congress finds that both Czechoslovakia and Hungary have: (1) recognized fundamental human rights with respect to their citizens; (2) introduced economic reforms based on market-oriented principles; and (3) have demonstrated a desire to build a friendly relationship with the United States.

Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to authorize the President to extend nondiscriminatory treatment (most-favored-nation treatment) to the products of both countries.

Amends the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act of 1991 (Public Law 102-164) to provide for a two-tier system of emergency unemployment benefits: (1) a 20-week period under specified conditions for some States with severe unemployment; and (2) a 13-week period for all other States. (Current law provides for a three-tier system of 20-, 13-, and six-week periods.)

Makes reachback provisions applicable to all States.

Terminates such emergency program for any week beginning after June 13, 1992 (currently July 4, 1992).

Provides that, any State which satifies the requirements which trigger the 20-week period of benefits for the week which ends October 19, 1991, on the basis of information submitted to a specified congressional committee by the Department of Labor on November 7, 1991, the 20-week period shall begin in such State with the first week (rather than the third week after the first week) for which emergency unemployment compensation may be payable in such State.

Repeals a specified provision of the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act of 1986 prohibiting the importation of gold coins from the Soviet Union.

Title I: Extension of Nondiscriminatory Treatment to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania - Extends nondiscriminatory treatment (most-favored-nation treatment) to the products of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that the President should take prompt action to provide preferential tariff treatment to such products under the Generalized System of Preferences.

Title II: Trade Preference for the Andean Region - Andean Trade Preference Act - Authorizes the President to grant duty-free treatment to eligible articles from an Andean beneficiary country. Sets forth factors the President must take into account in determining whether to designate a country a beneficiary country, limited to a choice of Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, and Peru. Requires the President, before such designation, to notify the House of Representatives and the Senate of his intention to make such designation, together with the considerations entering into such decision.

Requires the President, on or before the third, sixth, and ninth anniversaries of the date of enactment of this Act, to report to the Congress on the operation of this Act, including the results of a general review of beneficiary countries.

Requires goods imported from a U.S. insular possession to receive duty treatment no less favorable than the treatment afforded such goods imported from a beneficiary country. Authorizes the President to withdraw or suspend the designation of a country as a beneficiary country or the application of duty-free treatment to a product if circumstances have changed to bar such designation.

Sets forth criteria with respect to the eligibility for duty-free treatment of products grown or manufactured in a beneficiary country. Declares that duty-free treatment shall not apply to: (1) textile and apparel articles which are subject to textile agreements; (2) footwear not designated as eligible under the General System of Preferences; (3) tuna in airtight containers; (4) petroleum or any derivative product; (5) certain watches; (6) certain articles which are subject to reduced rates of duty; or (7) certain sugars, syrups, molasses, rum, and tafia.

Requires the President to reduce duty rates on handbags, luggage, flat goods, work gloves, and leather wearing apparel that: (1) are the product of a beneficiary country; and (2) were not designated on August 5, 1983, as eligible articles under the General System of Preferences.

Provides for presidential suspension of duty-free treatment.

Authorizes filing of a petition with the Secretary of Agriculture with a request for emergency relief regarding a perishable product if it has already been filed with the International Trade Commission (ITC) alleging injury from imports from a beneficiary country. Authorizes the President to withdraw duty-free treatment with respect to such products after the Secretary's recommendation to take emergency action under this Act.

Makes related amendments to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States in order to increase the duty-free tourist allowances for U.S. residents returning from beneficiary countries from $400 to $600 and one additional liter of alcoholic beverages if produced in such country.

Requires the ITC to report to the Congress on the economic impact of this Title on U.S. industries and consumers and its effectiveness in promoting drug-related crop eradication and crop substitution efforts in beneficiary countries.

Requires the Secretary of Labor to review and analyze the impact of this Act on U.S. labor.

Title III: Control and Elimination of Chemical and Biological Weapons - Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 - Declares it is U.S. policy to: (1) seek multilaterally coordinated efforts with other countries to control the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons; and (2) strengthen efforts to control chemical agents, precursors, and equipment.

Requires the President to use the U.S. export control laws to control the export of defense articles, defense services, goods, and technologies that he determines would assist a country in acquiring the capability to produce or use such weapons.

Amends the Export Administration Act of 1979 to require the Secretary of Commerce to establish a list of goods and technology that would assist a foreign government or group in acquiring chemical or biological weapons. Requires a validated export license for the export of such items to certain countries of concern.

Requires the President to impose certain sanctions against foreign persons if he determines that they knowingly contributed to the efforts of a country to acquire, use, or stockpile chemical or biological weapons. Declares such sanctions to include: (1) denial of U.S. procurement contracts for goods or services from such foreign persons; and (2) prohibition against importation of products from such persons. Authorizes the President to waive imposition of such sanctions if he determines that is in the national security interests of the United States.

Amends the Arms Export Control Act to set forth similar provisions.

Requires the President to make a determination with respect to whether a country has used chemical or biological weapons in violation of international law or has used lethal chemical or biological weapons against its own nationals. Authorizes specified congressional committees to request the President to make such determination with respect to the use of such weapons.

Requires the President to impose the following sanctions against foreign countries that have been found to have used such weapons: (1) termination of assistance under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (except humanitarian assistance and agricultural commodities); (2) termination of arms sales and arms sales financing; (3) denial of U.S. credit; and (4) prohibition of the export of certain goods and technology. Directs the President to impose at least three of the following additional sanctions unless such countries cease the use of such weapons and provide assurances that they will not use, and will allow inspections with respect to, such weapons: (1) opposition to the extension of multilateral development bank assistance; (2) prohibition of U.S. bank loans (except loans for food or agricultural commodities); (3) further export prohibitions; (4) import restrictions; (5) suspension of diplomatic relations; and (6) termination of air carrier landing rights. Provides for the removal and waiver of such sanctions.

Requires the President to submit to the Congress annual reports on the efforts of countries to acquire chemical or biological weapons.

Repeals certain duplicative provisions of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993.