The United States accords permanent most-favored-nation (MFN) treatment to all its trading partners except six countries to which it is denied by law and 14 countries whose MFN status is temporary and subject to the conditions of Title IV of the Trade Act of 1974.
On November 30th to December 3rd, 1999, the highest decision-making body of the World Trade Organization (WTO), called the Ministerial Conference, will meet in Seattle to make broad policy decisions. The key issue for the trade ministers attending the meeting will be to decide on the structure and topics for the agenda of a new round of multilateral trade negotiations. Countries have committed to discuss agriculture and services trade in the new round. Other items that have been proposed for inclusion in the new round or for earlier consideration include tariff reductions, concessions for developing countries, labor issues and the environment, and the WTO decision-making process. Major labor, environmental, and consumer interest groups are expected to be present in Seattle to argue for more consideration of workers' rights and the environment within the WTO. This report provides a summary background on preparations for the Ministerial and related issues of congressional interest.
The tariff and quota treatment of U.S. imports from Mexico under the North American Free Trade Agreement has resulted in a distinct and increasing competitive disadvantage for imports from the beneficiary countries of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act (CBERA). To eliminate this disadvantage, proposals have been made to extend to imports from Caribbean Basin countries preferential treatment equivalent to that accorded imports of identical goods from Mexico. This report compares the provisions of four such proposals: Title I of H.R. 984, Title I of S. 371, H.R. 1834, and S. 1389.
This meeting of the decision making body of the WTO was expected to make decisions that would lead to another round of negotiations on a wide variety of trade rules and related issues. Although the United States continues to assert the necessity of pursuing the twin goals of free trade and environmental protection and to argue that these need not be in conflict, controversy remains over how the multilateral trading system should address the specifics of environmental issues.
This report provides background on foreign policy sanctions. It addresses the following questions: Why do we apply sanctions? What objectives does the U.S. government seek to achieve when it imposes sanctions? Who imposes sanctions? What tools are available? How likely is it that sanctions will achieve the stated goal? What secondary consequences might sanctions have? What change is required for the sanctions to be lifted? Would multilateral sanctions be more desirable and achievable? The report also provides an uncomplicated map of where sanctions policies and options currently may be found in U.S. law.
This report presents arguments for and against congressional resolutions to disapprove President Clinton’s February 26, 1999 certification of Mexico as a fully cooperative country in efforts to control illicit narcotics.1 These resolutions (H.J.Res. 35--Bachus, and H.J.Res. 43--Mica and Gilman) would disapprove the President’s certification, but would permit him to avoid withholding of assistance to Mexico if he determined that vital national interests required such assistance.
This paper shows how much the United States has contributed to these international agencies in recent years. It also shows how much the international agencies budget (and the source of those funds) for their administrative expenses and their operational budgets. This report will be updated periodically.
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