Text - Treaty Document: Senate Consideration of Treaty Document 108-24All Information (Except Treaty Text)

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[Senate Treaty Document 108-24]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]




108th Congress                                               Treaty Doc.
                                 SENATE                     
 2d Session                                                      108-24
_______________________________________________________________________


 
             AGREEMENT WITH CANADA ON PACIFIC HAKE/WHITING

                               __________

                                MESSAGE

                                  from

                   THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

                              transmitting

 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND 
 THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA ON PACIFIC HAKE/WHITING (THE ``AGREEMENT''), 
                   DONE AT SEATTLE, NOVEMBER 21, 2003




 June 16, 2004.--The treaty was read the first time, and together with 
the accompanying papers, referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations 
          and ordered to be printed for the use of the Senate



                         LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL

                              ----------                              

                                    The White House, June 16, 2004.
To the Senate of the United States:
    With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the 
Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith the Agreement 
between the Government of the United States of America and the 
Government of Canada on Pacific Hake/Whiting (the 
``Agreement''), done at Seattle, November 21, 2003. I am also 
enclosing, for the information of the Senate, the report of the 
Secretary of State on the Agreement.
    The Agreement establishes, for the first time, agreed 
percentage shares of the transboundary stock of Pacific hake, 
also known as Pacific whiting. It also creates a process 
through which U.S. and Canadian scientists and fisheries 
managers will recommend the total catch of Pacific hake each 
year, to be divided by a set percentage formula. Stakeholders 
from both countries will have significant input into this 
process.
    The Agreement not only allows the Parties to redress the 
overfishing that had led to a recent decline in stock levels, 
but also provides long-term stability for U.S. fishers and 
processors and a structure for future scientific collaboration.
    The recommended legislation necessary to implement the 
Agreement will be submitted separately to the Congress.
    I recommend that the Senate give favorable consideration to 
this Agreement and give its advice and consent to ratification 
at an early date.

                                                    George W. Bush.


                          LETTER OF SUBMITTAL

                              ----------                              

                                       Department of State,
                                        Washington, April 19, 2004.
The President,
The White House.
    The President: I have the honor to submit to you, with a 
view to its transmission to the Senate for advice and consent 
to ratification, the Agreement between the Government of the 
United States of America and the Government of Canada on 
Pacific Hake/Whiting done at Seattle November 21, 2003 (the 
``Agreement'').
    The Agreement establishes, for the first time, agreed 
percentage shares of the transboundary stock of Pacific 
whiting, also known as Pacific hake. It also creates a process 
through which U.S. and Canadian scientists and fisheries 
managers will determine the total catch of hake each year, to 
be divided by the percentage formula. Stakeholders from both 
countries will have significant input into this process.
    Since the late 1970s, scientists from the United States and 
Canada have generally reached informal agreement on an annual 
overall total allowable catch (TAC) for the transboundary stock 
of Pacific hake. The two countries have conducted joint stock 
assessments every three years, and have agreed informally on 
certain stock management measures, but not the most important 
one: how to divide the TAC between U.S. and Canadian fisheries. 
The United States has generally claimed 80% of the allowable 
catch, while Canada has taken 30%. This situation, coupled with 
other factors, led to a decline in the stock. In 2002, for the 
first time, the Department of Commerce declared the stock to be 
``overfished.''
    U.S. and Canadian officials have been attempting since the 
early 1990s to reach agreement on a percentage share. Following 
resumed talks in 2002, both sides agreed in principle in April 
2003 to the text of a new long-term management and sharing 
arrangement.
    The new agreement formalizes past scientific and stock 
assessment collaboration through the creation of two new 
science bodies: a Joint Technical Committee, charged with 
producing an annual stock assessment, and a Scientific Review 
Group to provide peer review of the technical committee's work. 
These groups will include scientists appointed by each Party, 
as well as independent members referred by a panel of private 
sector advisors. A third body, the Joint Management Committee, 
will consider the scientific advice and recommend to the 
Parties each year an overall total allowable catch.
    Most importantly, the agreement establishes a default 
harvest policy and assigns 73.88% of the TAC to the United 
States and 26.12% to Canada for an initial period of nine 
years, and thereafter unless the Parties agree to change it.
    The U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. fishing 
industry strongly support the Agreement. The Agreement not only 
allows the Parties to redress the overfishing that had led to 
the recent decline in stock levels, but also provides for long-
term stability to U.S. fishers and processors and a structure 
for future scientific collaboration.
    The recommended legislation necessary to implement the 
Agreement will be submitted separately to the Congress.
    I therefore recommend that you submit the Agreement to the 
Senate for its advice and consent to ratification at the 
earliest possible date.
    Respectfully submitted.
                                                   Colin L. Powell.
    Enclosure: As stated.