Text - Treaty Document: Senate Consideration of Treaty Document 115-3All Information (Except Treaty Text)

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[Senate Treaty Document 115-3]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



115th Congress }                                            { Treaty Doc.
SENATE
 2d Session    }                                            {  115-3
                                                                 
_______________________________________________________________________

                                     

 
   AMENDMENTS TO THE TREATY ON FISHERIES BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENTS OF 
 CERTAIN PACIFIC ISLAND STATES AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES 
                               OF AMERICA

                               __________

                                MESSAGE

                                  from

                     THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

                              transmitting

   AMENDMENTS TO THE TREATY ON FISHERIES BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENTS OF 
 CERTAIN PACIFIC ISLAND STATES AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES 
                               OF AMERICA
                               

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August 28, 2018.--Treaty was read the first time, and together with the 
accompanying papers, referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations and 
             order to be printed for the use of the Senate
             
             
                            _________ 

                U.S. GOVERNMENT PUBLISHING OFFICE
                   
 79-118                 WASHINGTON : 2018                   
 
 
 
 
             
                    

                         LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL

                              ----------                              


                                  The White House, August 28, 2018.
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 Amendments to 
the Treaty on Fisheries between the Governments of Certain 
Pacific Island States and the Government of the United States 
of America, done at Port Moresby April 2, 1987, as amended (the 
``Treaty''), done at Nadi, Fiji, December 3, 2016. I also 
transmit, for the information of the Senate, the amendments to 
the Annexes to the Treaty and report of the Department of State 
with respect to the Treaty and a Memorandum of Understanding 
reflecting the parties' intent to provisionally apply certain 
amendments.
    The objective of the Treaty is to provide United States 
purse seine vessels with fishing access to waters under the 
jurisdiction of 16 Pacific Island parties, and to provide a 
platform for broader cooperation between the parties. The 
Amendments update the Treaty's terms and conditions to promote 
more effective cooperation between parties and United States 
private-sector stakeholders. The Senate gave its advice and 
consent to prior amendments to the Treaty in 2003, but those 
amendments never entered into force. The Amendments my 
Administration is now submitting include some of those prior 
amendments.
    The Treaty and its Amendments serve United States 
diplomatic and economic interests by promoting positive 
relations with the Pacific Island parties and allowing for the 
continued operation of the United States-flagged fishing fleet 
in the region. The Amendments are supported by both Pacific 
Island parties and United States industry stakeholders.
    The recommended changes to the Treaty's implementing 
legislation, the South Pacific Tuna Act of 1988, to reflect the 
Amendments to the Treaty and its Annexes, will be submitted 
separately to the Congress.
    I recommend that the Senate give early and favorable 
consideration to the Amendments to this Treaty, and give its 
advice and consent to ratification.

                                           Donald J. Trump.
                          LETTER OF SUBMITTAL

                              ----------                              

                                       Department of State,
                                         Washington, July 26, 2017.
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, Amendments to the 1987 Treaty on Fisheries 
between the Governments of Certain Pacific Island States and 
the Government of the United States of America, as amended (the 
``Treaty''), done at Nadi on December 3, 2016. The Treaty was 
ratified by the United States on December 21, 1987, and entered 
into force on June 15, 1988. It was later amended May 14, 1992. 
Further amendments were submitted to the President on December 
28, 2002, and transmitted to the Senate on February 11, 2003, 
but those amendments never entered into force.
    The Treaty has been a cornerstone of our relations with the 
Pacific Island region for approximately three decades, and is 
often referred to domestically as the South Pacific Tuna 
Treaty. It provides fishing access for U.S. purse seine vessels 
to the exclusive economic zones (EEZs) of 16 Pacific Island 
parties (PIPs), and promotes broader cooperation between the 
parties and relevant stakeholders.
    The United States and the PIPs had been renegotiating the 
Treaty and its Annexes since 2009 to update the text and extend 
the terms of fishing access for U.S. vessels. In June 2016, 
after the U.S. notified that it planned to withdraw from the 
Treaty, the parties agreed in principle on a revised ``business 
model'' under the Treaty. The Annexes include the terms and 
conditions for a more viable framework for U.S. industry 
fishing access through 2022. The parties formally adopted the 
agreed amendments to the Treaty and its Annexes on December 3, 
2016, in Nadi, Fiji.
    The agreement reached to amend the Treaty is consistent 
with the Administration's foreign policy objectives to ensure 
the United States engages in international negotiations to 
support commercial, as well as diplomatic interests. The Treaty 
supports significant economic activity; according to previous 
estimates, the value of tuna caught by vessels operating under 
the Treaty could approach $500 million annually. It is 
especially important to the economy of American Samoa, which is 
heavily dependent on the operation of fishing vessels and an 
associated tuna cannery.
    An overview of the Treaty Amendments, including a detailed 
article-by-article analysis, is enclosed with this report. Also 
included, for the information of the Senate, are the amendments 
to the Annexes to the Treaty, which do not require advice and 
consent, and a Memorandum of Understanding stating the parties' 
intent to implement certain amendments provisionally as of 
January 1, 2017. The Memorandum of Understanding has allowed 
U.S. fishing vessels to continue operating in the region 
without interruption. Recommended amendments to the South 
Pacific Tuna Act of 1988, the implementing legislation for the 
Treaty, will be submitted separately to Congress.
    The relevant U.S. fishing industry supports the Amendments. 
The Treaty Amendments are also strongly supported by the 
Government of American Samoa. The U.S. Department of Commerce 
and the U.S. Coast Guard join the Department of State in 
recommending that the proposed Agreement be transmitted to the 
Senate as soon as possible for its advice and consent to 
ratification.
    Respectfully submitted,
                                          Rex W. Tillerson.
    Enclosures: As stated.
    
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