Text: H.R.2310 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (05/07/2009)


111th CONGRESS
1st Session
H. R. 2310


To authorize assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses to promote exports to the People’s Republic of China, and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 7, 2009

Mr. Larsen of Washington (for himself, Mr. Kirk, Mrs. Davis of California, and Mr. Israel) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and in addition to the Committee on Small Business, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To authorize assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses to promote exports to the People’s Republic of China, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title and table of contents.

(a) Short title.—This Act may be cited as the “United States-China Market Engagement and Export Promotion Act”.

(b) Table of contents.—The table of contents for this Act is as follows:


Sec. 1. Short title and table of contents.

Sec. 101. Grants to States to establish and operate offices to promote exports to China.

Sec. 102. Program to establish China market advocate positions in United States Export Assistance Centers.

Sec. 103. Assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses for trade missions to China.

Sec. 104. Plan to consolidate fees for Gold Key matching services in China.

Sec. 201. Trade outreach at the Office of International Trade of the Small Business Administration.

Sec. 202. Grants for Chinese business education programs.

SEC. 101. Grants to States to establish and operate offices to promote exports to China.

(a) Grants.—The Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Assistant Secretary for Trade Promotion and Director of the United States and Foreign Commercial Service, shall provide grants to States to establish and operate State offices in the People's Republic of China to provide assistance to United States exporters for the promotion of exports to China, with a particular focus on establishment of offices in locations in addition to Beijing and Shanghai.

(b) Amount.—The amount of a grant under subsection (a) shall not exceed 33 percent of the total costs to establish and operate a State office described in such subsection.

(c) Regulations.—Not later than 270 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Commerce shall promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to carry out this section.

(d) Definitions.—In this section:

(1) STATE.—The term “State” has the meaning given the term in section 2301(j)(5) of the Export Enhancement Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 4721(j)(5)).

(2) UNITED STATES EXPORTER.—The term “United States exporter” has the meaning given the term in section 2301(j)(3) of the Export Enhancement Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 4721(j)(3)).

(e) Authorization of appropriations.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce $10,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2010 through 2014 to carry out this section.

(2) AVAILABILITY.—Amounts appropriated pursuant to the authorization of appropriations under paragraph (1) shall remain available until expended.

SEC. 102. Program to establish China market advocate positions in United States Export Assistance Centers.

(a) Program authorized.—The Secretary of Commerce, in the Secretary's role as chairperson of the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee, shall establish a program to provide comprehensive assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses in the United States for purposes of facilitating exports to China.

(b) China market advocates.—

(1) POSITIONS AUTHORIZED.—

(A) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary of Commerce shall create not fewer than 50 China market advocate positions in United States Export Assistance Centers.

(B) APPOINTMENT AND TRAINING.—The China market advocates authorized under subparagraph (A) shall be appointed by the Secretary from among individuals with expertise in matters relating to trade with China and shall receive the training authorized under paragraph (2).

(C) RATE OF PAY.—China market advocates shall be paid at a rate equal to the rate of basic pay for grades GS–10 through GS–13 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code.

(D) GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTION.—To the maximum extent practicable, China market advocates shall be assigned to United States Export Assistance Centers in a manner that achieves an equitable geographic distribution of China market advocates among United States Export Assistance Centers.

(2) TRAINING AUTHORIZED.—The Secretary shall provide training to China market advocates in the business culture of China, the market of China, and the evolving political, cultural, and economic environment in China.

(c) Services provided by advocates.—China market advocates authorized under subsection (b) shall provide comprehensive assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses in the United States for purposes of facilitating exports of United States goods to China. Such assistance may include—

(1) assistance to find and utilize Federal and private resources to facilitate entering into the market of China;

(2) continuous direct and personal contact with businesses that have entered the market of China;

(3) assistance to resolve disputes with the Government of the United States or China relating to intellectual property rights violations, export restrictions, and additional trade barriers; and

(4) to the extent practicable, locating and recruiting businesses to enter the market of China.

(d) Advertising of program.—The Secretary of Commerce shall make available to the public through advertising and other appropriate methods information about services offered by China market advocates under the program authorized under subsection (a).

(e) Authorization of appropriations.—There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce to carry out this section $15,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2010 through 2014, of which—

(1) $5,000,000 are authorized to be appropriated to carry out subsection (b)(2); and

(2) $2,000,000 are authorized to be appropriated to carry out subsection (d).

SEC. 103. Assistance to small- and medium-sized businesses for trade missions to China.

(a) Assistance authorized.—The Secretary of Commerce, in the Secretary's role as chairperson of the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee, shall provide assistance through United States Export Assistance Centers to eligible small- and medium-sized businesses in the United States for business-related expenses for trade missions to China.

(b) Selection process.—The Secretary of Commerce shall—

(1) develop a transparent and competitive scoring system for selection of small- and medium-sized businesses to receive assistance authorized under subsection (a) that focuses on the feasibility of exporting goods and services to China; and

(2) develop specific criteria for a definition of “business-related expenses”, as the term is used in subsection (a), that is compatible with best business practices.

(c) Authorization of appropriations.—There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce $2,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2010 through 2014 to carry out this section.

SEC. 104. Plan to consolidate fees for Gold Key matching services in China.

(a) Plan required.—As soon as is practicable after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Assistant Secretary for Trade Promotion and Director of the United States and Foreign Commercial Service, shall submit to Congress a plan to consolidate fees charged by the Department of Commerce for Gold Key matching services provided to small- and medium-sized businesses that export goods or services produced in the United States to more than one market in China.

(b) Gold Key matching services defined.—In this section, the term “Gold Key matching services” means the Gold Key Service program of the Department of Commerce and includes—

(1) the arrangement of business meetings with pre-screened contacts, representatives, distributors, professional associations, government contacts, or licensing or joint venture partners in a foreign country;

(2) customized market and industry briefings with trade specialists of the Department of Commerce;

(3) timely and relevant market research;

(4) appointments with prospective trade partners in key industry sectors;

(5) post-meeting debriefing with trade specialists of the Department of Commerce and assistance in developing appropriate follow-up strategies; and

(6) assistance with travel, accommodations, interpreter service, and clerical support.

SEC. 201. Trade outreach at the Office of International Trade of the Small Business Administration.

Section 22 of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 649) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsections:

“(h) Promotion of exports to China.—The Office shall provide strategic guidance to small business concerns with respect to exporting goods and services to China.

“(i) Director of China Program Grants.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—There shall be in the Office a Director of China Program Grants (in this subsection referred to as the ‘Director’).

“(2) APPOINTMENT.—The Director shall be appointed by the Administrator and shall be an individual with demonstrated successful experience in matters relating to international trade and administering government contracts.

“(3) RATE OF PAY.—The Director shall be paid at a rate equal to or greater than the rate of basic pay for grade GS–14 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code.

“(4) DUTIES.—The Director shall be responsible for administering the grant program authorized under section 202 of the United States-China Market Engagement and Export Promotion Act (relating to Chinese business education programs) and any other similar or related program of the Office.”.

SEC. 202. Grants for Chinese business education programs.

(a) Grants authorized.—The Administrator of the Small Business Administration, acting through the Director of China Program Grants in the Office of International Trade, shall make grants to institutions of higher education, or combinations of such institutions, to pay the Federal share of the cost of planning, establishing, and operating education programs described in subsection (b) to—

(1) develop and enhance student skills, awareness, and expertise relating to business in China; and

(2) prepare students to promote the competitiveness of and opportunities for United States small business concerns in China.

(b) Education programs described.—Education programs described in this subsection are academic programs of study relating to business in China, including undergraduate and graduate level degrees, courses, or seminars on—

(1) the economy of China;

(2) trade and commerce in China;

(3) new and expanding export opportunities for United States small business concerns in China; and

(4) the economic, commerce, and trade relations between the United States and China.

(c) Application.—A small business concern desiring a grant under this section shall submit an application at such time, in such manner, and containing such information as the Director of China Program Grants may require.

(d) Duration of grants.—A grant under this section shall be for an initial period not to exceed 2 years. The Director of China Program Grants may renew such grant for additional 2-year periods.

(e) Federal share.—

(1) FEDERAL SHARE.—The Federal share of the cost of an education program described in subsection (b) shall not exceed 50 percent of the cost of such program.

(2) NON-FEDERAL SHARE.—The non-Federal share of the cost of an education program described in subsection (b) may be provided either in cash or in-kind.

(f) Definition.—In this section, the term “institution of higher education” has the meaning given the term in section 101 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1001).