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Cybercrime: The Council of Europe Convention

Description: Forty-three countries, including the United States, have signed the Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime of November 2001. The U.S. Senate ratified the Convention on August 3, 2006. The Convention seeks to better combat cybercrime by harmonizing national laws, improving investigative abilities, and boosting international cooperation. Supporters argue that the Convention will enhance deterrence, while critics counter it will have little effect without participation by countries in which cybercriminals operate freely. Others warn it will endanger privacy and civil liberties.
Date: September 28, 2006
Creator: Archick, Kristin
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agriculture and Fast Track or Trade Promotion Authority

Description: New “fast track,” or trade promotion, authority (TPA) cleared the 107th Congress, and was signed into law (P.L. 107-210) on August 6, 2002. Such authority enables the Administration to submit negotiated foreign trade agreements to Congress for consideration under expedited procedures. Many agricultural and food industry interests were among the export-oriented enterprises that supported TPA, arguing that foreign trading partners would not seriously negotiate with an Administration that lacked it. However, some farm groups argued that fast track ultimately will lead to new agreements that have adverse effects on U.S. producers, at least of some commodities.
Date: November 7, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Hanrahan, Charles E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Iran Nonproliferation Act and the International Space Station: Issues and Options

Description: The Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000 (INA) was enacted to help stop foreign transfers to Iran of weapons of mass destruction, missile technology, and advanced conventional weapons technology, particularly from Russia. Section 6 of the INA bans U.S. payments to Russia in connection with the International Space Station (ISS) unless the U.S. President determines that Russia is taking steps to prevent such proliferation. The ISS is currently under construction in orbit. According to current plans, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will become dependent on Russia for certain ISS crew-related services beginning in April 2006 for which NASA must pay. Thus, the INA could significantly affect U.S. utilization of ISS. This report outlines the history of INA, its effect on Russian and Iranian proliferation, its impact on the ISS program, and options for resolving associated issues.
Date: March 2, 2005
Creator: Squassoni, Sharon & Smith, Marcia S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization (WTO): Issues in the Debate on U.S. Participation

Description: In a report submitted to Congress on March 2, 2005 on the costs and benefits of continued participation in the WTO, the Administration cited a number of statistics that show growth in the U.S. and world economies since establishment of the WTO. Whether the growth cited was the result exclusively or mainly of activity in the WTO is arguable. Academic studies indicate that the United States would gain substantially from broad reductions in trade barriers worldwide. At the same time, some workers and industries might not share in those gains. Questions of governance and power are among the issues at the heart of the debate on the WTO. Major decisions in the WTO are made by member governments, who determine their negotiating positions, file dispute challenges, and implement their decisions. However, some challenge the claim that the WTO is democratic in nature by arguing that smaller countries are left out of the decisionmaking and that governments tend to represent large commercial interests only.
Date: June 9, 2005
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F. & Sek, Lenore
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The World Trade Organization: The Hong Kong Ministerial

Description: The World Trade Organization (WTO) held its 6th Ministerial summit in Hong Kong from December 13-18, 2005. WTO Ministerials are held every two years to bring together trade ministers from member states, often to make political decisions for the body. Although an original goal of the Ministerial was to agree on a package of modalities (methods by which the round is negotiated) for the ongoing Doha Development Agenda (DDA) round of trade negotiations, this aim was dropped in order to avoid a high-profile failure similar to previous Ministerials at Cancun and Seattle. Rather, members agreed to some modest advancements in agriculture, industrial tariffs, and duty and quota-free access for least developed countries. The final outcome of these negotiations could provide a substantial boost to the world economy, but if the round itself is not completed, there may be repercussions for the WTO as an institution and for the architecture of the world trading system.
Date: January 20, 2006
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F.; Cooper, William H.; Jones, Vivian C.; Langton, Danielle J.; Hanrahan, Charles E.; Fletcher, Susan R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Iran-Iraq War: Implications for U.S. Policy

Description: This report discusses the Iran-Iraq conflict at its present state, which has become a war of attrition with neither side capable of achieving a decisive military victory over the other in the short term. U.S. policy concerns currently are threefold: first, that Iraq, despite moves to sustain its economic and military capacities, ultimately might suffer a destabilizing defeat to the detriment of U.S. interests in the Persian Gulf region; second, that future instability in Iran could open opportunities for Soviet exploitation; and third, that the conflict might expand beyond its present confines to threaten friendly regional states and the availability of their vast petroleum resources.
Date: October 14, 1987
Creator: Preece, Richard M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization (WTO): Issues in the Debate on U.S. Participation

Description: In a report submitted to Congress on March 2, 2005 on the costs and benefits of continued participation in the WTO, the Administration cited a number of statistics that show growth in the U.S. and world economies since establishment of the WTO. Whether the growth cited was the result exclusively or mainly of activity in the WTO is arguable. Academic studies indicate that the United States would gain substantially from broad reductions in trade barriers worldwide. At the same time, some workers and industries might not share in those gains. Questions of governance and power are among the issues at the heart of the debate on the WTO. Major decisions in the WTO are made by member governments, who determine their negotiating positions, file dispute challenges, and implement their decisions. However, some challenge the claim that the WTO is democratic in nature by arguing that smaller countries are left out of the decisionmaking and that governments tend to represent large commercial interests only.
Date: June 9, 2005
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F. & Sek, Lenore
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department