Summary: H.R.434 — 106th Congress (1999-2000)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Conference report filed in House (05/04/2000)

Trade and Development Act of 2000 - Title I: Extension of Certain Trade Benefits to Sub-Saharan Africa - Subtitle A: Trade Policy for Sub-Saharan Africa - African Growth and Opportunity Act - Declares the support of Congress for: (1) encouraging increased trade and investment between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa; (2) reducing tariff and nontariff barriers and other obstacles to sub-Saharan and U.S. trade; (3) negotiating reciprocal and mutually beneficial trade agreements, including the possibility of establishing free trade areas that serve the interests of both the United States and the countries of sub-Saharan Africa; (4) focusing on countries committed to the rule of law, economic reform, the eradication of poverty, and the development of political freedom; (5) strengthening and expanding the private sector in sub-Saharan Africa, especially enterprises owned by women and small businesses; (6) establishing a United States-Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum; and (7) the accession of sub-Saharan African countries to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions.

(Sec. 104) Authorizes the President to designate a sub-Saharan African country as a beneficiary country eligible to receive duty-free treatment for certain articles that are the growth, product, or manufacture of such country, if the President determines that it: (1) has established, or is making continual progress toward establishing, a market-based economy, rule of law, the elimination of barriers to U.S. trade and investment, economic policies to reduce poverty, a system to combat corruption and bribery, and protection of internationally recognized worker rights; (2) does not engage in activities that undermine U.S. national security or foreign policy interests; and (3) does not engage in gross violations of internationally recognized human rights or provide support for acts of international terrorism.

(Sec. 105) Directs the President to convene annual high-level meetings between appropriate U.S. Government officials and officials of the governments of sub-Saharan African countries to foster close economic ties between them. Directs the President to establish a United States-Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum which shall discuss expanding trade and investment relations between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa. Directs the President, in selecting issues of common interest to the Forum, to instruct the U.S. delegates to the Forum to promote a review by the Forum of the HIV-AIDS epidemic in each sub-Saharan African country and its effect on economic development there.

(Sec. 106) Requires the President to report annually to Congress on the trade and investment policy of the United States for sub-Saharan Africa.

Subtitle B: Trade Benefits - Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to authorize the President to designate a sub-Saharan African country as a beneficiary country eligible to receive duty-free treatment, through September 30, 2008, for any non-import-sensitive article that is the growth, product, or manufacture of such country if the President determines that it meets the eligibility requirements under this Act and certain other requirements for designation under the Trade Act of 1974. Directs the President to monitor, review, and report to Congress annually on the progress of sub-Saharan countries to determine their current or potential eligibility under the requirements of this Act.

(Sec. 112) Grants duty-free treatment, without any quantitative limitations, to textile and apparel articles imported from a beneficiary sub-Saharan African country, if such country: (1) adopts an efficient visa system, domestic laws, and enforcement procedures to prevent unlawful transshipment of such articles (preferential treatment claimed on the basis of material false information concerning the country of origin, manufacture, processing, or assembly of the article or any of its components) and the use of counterfeit documents; (2) enacts legislation or promulgates regulations that would permit U.S. Customs Service verification teams to have access necessary to investigate allegations of transshipment through such country; (3) agrees to report, at the request of the U.S. Customs Service, on the total exports from and imports into that country with respect to such articles; (4) will cooperate with the United States to prevent circumvention as provided in Article 5 of the Agreement on Textiles and Clothing; (5) agrees to require all of its producers and exporters of such articles to maintain complete records of the production and the export of the articles for at least two years; and (6) agrees to report, at the request of the U.S. Customs Service, documentation establishing the country of origin of such articles as used in such country in implementing an effective visa system.

Directs the Secretary of Commerce to monitor imports of a textile and apparel article from a beneficiary sub-Saharan African country into the United States to determine if there has been a surge in such imports, and whether such article is being imported in such increased quantities as to cause serious damage (or threat of damage) to the domestic industry producing a like or directly competitive article. Directs the President, if there is an affirmative determination, to suspend the duty-free treatment provided such article.

Directs the President to eliminate the existing quotas on textile and apparel articles imported into the United States from: (1) Kenya within 30 days after it adopts an effective visa system to prevent unlawful transshipment of textile and apparel articles and the use of counterfeit documents relating to their import into the United States; and (2) Mauritius within 30 days after it adopts a visa system.

(Sec. 113) Directs the President to deny trade benefits under this Act to any exporter that has engaged in transshipment with respect to textile or apparel products from a beneficiary sub-Saharan African country.

(Sec. 116) Directs the President to develop, and report to Congress on, a plan for the purpose of negotiating and entering into one or more trade agreements with interested beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries to increase trade and investment between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa.

(Sec. 117) Expresses the sense of Congress with respect to establishment of the position of Assistant United States Trade Representative for African Affairs within the Office of the United States Trade Representative for the purpose of directing and coordinating interagency activities on United States-Africa trade policy and investment matters.

Subtitle C: Economic Development Related Issues - Expresses the sense of Congress with respect to making debt relief available to the world's poorest countries in a manner that promotes economic growth and human rights, alleviates poverty, and combats terrorism and the spread of AIDS.

(Sec. 122) Expresses the sense of Congress that the stated policy of the executive branch in the 1997 Partnership for Growth and Opportunity in Africa initiative is a step toward the establishment of a comprehensive trade and development policy for sub-Saharan Africa and is a companion to the policy goals set forth in this Act. Directs the President, in addition to continuing bilateral and multilateral economic and development assistance, to target technical assistance toward: (1) developing relationships between U.S. firms and firms in sub-Saharan Africa; (2) providing assistance to sub-Saharan African countries to liberalize trade and promote exports, bring their regimes into compliance with World Trade Organization (WTO) standards, make financial and fiscal reforms, and promote greater agribusiness linkages; (3) addressing such critical agricultural policy issues as market liberalization, agricultural export development, and agribusiness investment in processing and transporting agricultural commodities; (4) increasing the number of reverse trade missions to growth-oriented sub-Saharan African countries; (5) increasing trade in services; and (6) encouraging greater sub-Saharan participation in future WTO negotiations on services, and making further commitments in their schedules to the General Agreement on Trade in Services in order to encourage the removal of tariff and nontariff barriers.

(Sec. 123) Expresses the sense of Congress that the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) should exercise its authorities to initiate, in addition to any existing fund, an equity infrastructure fund or funds in support of projects in sub-Saharan African countries, particularly projects that expand opportunities for women entrepreneurs and employment for the poor.

Amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to direct the Board of Directors of OPIC to increase financial assistance in sub-Saharan Africa.

(Sec. 124) Expresses the sense of Congress that the Board of Directors of the Export-Import Bank of the United States shall continue to take comprehensive measures to promote the expansion of its financial commitments in sub-Saharan Africa under its loan, guarantee and insurance programs.

(Sec. 125) Directs the Secretary of Commerce, subject to the availability of appropriations, to take steps to ensure that at least 20 full-time U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service employees are stationed in at least ten different sub-Saharan African countries.

Directs the International Trade Administration to take specified action to encourage the export of U.S. goods and services to sub-Saharan African countries.

(Sec. 126) Expresses the sense of Congress that, to the extent appropriate, the U.S. Government should make every effort to donate to governments of eligible sub-Saharan African countries air traffic control equipment no longer in use, including appropriate related reimbursable technical assistance for such equipment.

(Sec. 127) Sets forth congressional declarations of policy, including that the Development Fund for Africa: (1) has been an effective tool in providing development assistance to sub-Saharan Africa since 1988; (2) will complement the other provisions of this Act and lay a foundation for increased trade and investment opportunities between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa; and (3) through its assistance will continue to support programs and activities that promote the long term economic development of sub-Saharan Africa. Declares that the African Development Foundation has a unique congressional mandate to empower the poor to participate fully in development and to increase opportunities for gainful employment, alleviation of poverty, and more equitable income distribution in sub-Saharan Africa.

Authorizes the use of long-term development assistance for sub-Saharan Africa to: (1) promote democratization, good governance, and strong civil societies; and (2) strengthen conflict resolution capabilities of governmental, intergovernmental, and nongovernmental entities.

(Sec. 128) Expresses the sense of Congress that U.S. businesses should: (1) provide assistance to sub-Saharan African countries to prevent and reduce the incidence of HIV-AIDS there; and (2) consider the establishment of a HIV-AIDS Response Fund to provide for coordination among such businesses in the collection and distribution of such assistance to sub-Saharan African countries.

(Sec. 129) Expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) addressing the HIV-AIDS crisis in sub-Saharan Africa should be a central component of U.S. foreign policy with respect to that region; (2) significant progress needs to be made in preventing and treating HIV-AIDS there in order to sustain a mutually beneficial trade relationship between the United States and sub-Saharan African countries; and (3) the HIV-AIDS crisis in sub-Saharan Africa is a global threat that merits further attention through greatly expanded public, private, and joint public-private efforts, and through appropriate U.S. legislation.

(Sec. 130) Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to conduct, and report to specified congressional committees on, a two-year study of ways to improve the flow of American farming techniques and practices to African farmers.

(Sec. 131) Expresses the sense of Congress that the United States should expeditiously work with the international community (particularly Africa and other countries affected by desertification) to strengthen and promote international cooperation to combat desertification.

Title II: Trade Benefits for Caribbean Basin - Subtitle A: Trade Policy for Caribbean Basin Countries - United States-Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act - Sets forth congressional findings and policy.

Subtitle B: Trade Benefits for Caribbean Basin Countries - Amends the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act to accord, for a specified transition period, the same preferential tariff and quota treatment (lower tariffs or duty-free treatment, free of any quantitative limitations) given certain textile and apparel articles imported from North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) countries to such articles from United States-Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act (CBTPA) beneficiary countries which have demonstrated commitments to: (1) undertake their obligations under the WTO on or ahead of schedule; (2) participate in negotiations toward completion of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) (or another free trade agreement); (3) protect intellectual property rights; (4) provide internationally recognized worker rights; (5) eliminate the worst forms of child labor; (6) meet certain counter-narcotics certification criteria for eligibility for U.S. assistance; (7) become a party to the Inter-American Convention Against Corruption; and (8) apply transparent, nondiscriminatory, and competitive procedures in government procurement equivalent to those contained in the Agreement on Government Procurement, and contribute to efforts in international fora to develop and implement rules in transparency in government procurement. Subjects to certain penalties exporters or countries that engage in the transshipment of such articles.

(Sec. 211) Directs the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to report periodically to Congress concerning CBTPA beneficiary countries.

Directs the U.S. International Trade Commission to report biennially to Congress and the president on the economic impact of this Act on U.S. industries and consumers, including its effectiveness in promoting drug-related crop eradication and crop substitution efforts of the CBTPA beneficiary countries.

(Sec. 212) Grants duty-free treatment to rum liqueurs and spirituous beverages from Canada if certain conditions are met.

(Sec. 213) Directs the President to convene a meeting with the trade ministers of the CBTPA beneficiary countries in order to reach agreement for initiating negotiations for such countries to enter into free trade agreements with the United States.

Title III: Normal Trade Relations - Authorizes the President to: (1) determine that title IV of the Trade Act of 1974 (denying nondiscriminatory treatment to the products of certain countries) should no longer apply to Albania and Kyrgyzstan; and (2) based upon such determinations, extend nondiscriminatory treatment (normal trade relations) to Albanian and Kyrgyzstan products.

Title IV: Other Trade Provisions - Directs the Comptroller General to report to Congress on the efficiency and effectiveness of Federal and State coordination of employment and retraining activities associated with: (1) trade adjustment assistance (including NAFTA trade adjustment assistance) provided under title II of the Trade Act of 1974; (2) the Job Training Partnership Act; (3) the Workforce Investment Act; and (4) unemployment insurance.

(Sec. 402) Requires the Secretary of Labor to certify qualified workers (who are covered under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Certification TA-W-28, 438, and were necessary for the decommissioning or closure of a nuclear power facility) as eligible to apply for trade adjustment assistance.

(Sec. 403) Directs the Secretary of the Treasury to reliquidate as free of duty certain customs entries of nuclear fuel assemblies and to refund any duties paid thereon.

(Sec. 404) Requires the submission of specified reports to the Committee on Finance of the Senate and the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives.

(Sec. 405) Amends the Uruguay Round Agreements Act to revise rules of origin for textile and apparel products to provide, for purposes of the customs laws and the administration of quantitative restrictions, that certain fabrics of silk, cotton, man-made fiber, or vegetable fiber, and certain other silk accessories shall be considered to originate in, and be the growth, product, or manufacture of, the country, territory, or possession in which the fabric is both dyed and printed when accompanied by two or more of specified finishing operations.

(Sec. 406) Establishes in the Office of the USTR the position of Chief Agricultural Negotiator, who shall be appointed by the President, with the advice and consent of the Senate. Requires the Chief to conduct trade negotiations and enforce trade agreements relating to U.S. agricultural products and services, as well as perform other functions as the USTR may direct.

(Sec. 407) Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to provide that if the United States initiates a retaliation list (list of products of a foreign country that has failed to comply with the report of the panel or Appellate Body of the WTO), or the USTR takes specified trade action against the goods of a foreign country because of its failure to implement the recommendation made pursuant to a dispute settlement proceeding under the WTO, the USTR shall periodically revise the list (including any reciprocal goods of the industries affected by the failure of the foreign country to implement such recommendation) or action to affect the other goods of the country. Declares that the USTR is not required to revise the retaliation list or the action with respect to a country, if: (1) the USTR determines that implementation of the recommendation by the country is imminent; or (2) the USTR together with the petitioner involved in the initial unfair trade investigation (or if no petition was filed, the affected U.S. industry) agree that it is unnecessary to revise the retaliation list.

(Sec. 408) Directs the Secretary of Labor to report to specified congressional committees on: (1) the applicability of trade adjustment assistance programs to agricultural commodity producers; and (2) recommendations to improve such programs or the establishment of new trade adjustment assistance programs for such producers.

(Sec. 409) Sets forth certain U.S. agricultural trade negotiating objectives with respect to the current WTO negotiations.

(Sec. 410) Amends the Tariff Act of 1930 to require, with a specified exception, merchandise (including merchandise of different classes, types, and categories) withdrawn from a foreign trade zone during any seven-day period to be treated upon entry (at the option of the operator or user of the zone) as a single entry and a single release of merchandise for purposes of customs user fees. Authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to require an operator or user of the zone to use an electronic data interchange to file such entries and to pay such user fees.

(Sec. 411) Includes the manufacture of goods by forced or indentured child labor within the prohibition on the importation of goods manufactured by forced labor or and indentured labor.

(Sec. 412) Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to make ineligible for duty-free treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences any country that has not implemented its commitment to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. Defines "worst forms of child labor" to mean: (1) all forms of slavery or practices similar to slavery; (2) child prostitution or use of a child for pornographic purposes; (3) use of a child for the production and trafficking of drugs; and (4) work which, by its nature, is likely to harm the health and safety of children.

Title V: Imports of Certain Wool Articles - Amends the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States to reduce, through December 31, 2003, the duty on certain worsted wool fabrics of a specified fiber diameter. Authorizes the President to proclaim a reduction in rate of duty for certain imports of worsted wool fabrics similar to the rate of duty for such fabrics imported from Canada.

(Sec. 502) Suspends the duty, through December 31, 2003, on certain wool yarn and wool fiber and wool top of a specified fiber diameter.

(Sec. 503) Provides for separate tariff line treatment for certain wool yarn and men's or boys' suits and suit-type jackets and trousers of worsted wool fabric.

(Sec. 504) Directs the President to monitor market conditions in the United States (including domestic demand, domestic supply, and increases in domestic production) of worsted wool fabrics and their components in the market for: (1) men's or boys' worsted wool suits, suit-type jackets, and trousers; (2) worsted wool fabric and yarn used in the manufacture of such articles; and (3) wool used in the production of such fabrics and yarn. Directs the President, on an annual basis, to consider requests made by U.S. manufacturers of apparel products made of such fabrics to modify the limitation on the quantity of such articles imported into the United States.

Makes U.S. manufacturers of such apparel eligible for a refund of duties paid on the imported wool fabrics used in its manufacture.

(Sec. 506) Establishes within the Treasury the Wool Research, Development, and Promotion Trust Fund which shall consist of duties paid on such wool articles imported into the United States.

Title VI: Revenue Provisions - Amends the Internal Revenue Code to provide for a waiver of the denial of a foreign tax credit for certain taxes paid or accrued to a foreign country, if the President determines and reports to Congress that such waiver is in the U.S. national interest and will expand trade and investment opportunities for U.S. companies in such country.

(Sec. 602) Amends the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999 to accelerate the deadline for the Secretary of the Treasury to make the second transfer to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands of incremental increases in cover over excise taxes on distilled spirits imported from such places.