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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Congressional Record: July 31, 2001 (House)]
[Page H4871-H4881]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:cr31jy01-37]                         

        UNITED STATES-JORDAN FREE TRADE AREA IMPLEMENTATION ACT

  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and pass the 
bill (H.R. 2603) to implement the agreement establishing a United 
States-Jordan free trade area, as amended.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                               H.R. 2603

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

     SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

       This Act may be cited as the ``United States-Jordan Free 
     Trade Area Implementation Act''.

     SEC. 2. PURPOSES.

       The purposes of this Act are--
       (1) to implement the agreement between the United States 
     and Jordan establishing a free trade area;
       (2) to strengthen and develop the economic relations 
     between the United States and Jordan for their mutual 
     benefit; and
       (3) to establish free trade between the 2 nations through 
     the removal of trade barriers.

     SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

       For purposes of this Act:
       (1) Agreement.--The term ``Agreement'' means the Agreement 
     between the United States of America and the Hashemite 
     Kingdom of Jordan on the Establishment of a Free Trade Area, 
     entered into on October 24, 2000.
       (2) HTS.--The term ``HTS'' means the Harmonized Tariff 
     Schedule of the United States.

             TITLE I--TARIFF MODIFICATIONS; RULES OF ORIGIN

     SEC. 101. TARIFF MODIFICATIONS.

       (a) Tariff Modifications Provided for in the Agreement.--
     The President may proclaim--
       (1) such modifications or continuation of any duty,
       (2) such continuation of duty-free or excise treatment, or
       (3) such additional duties,
     as the President determines to be necessary or appropriate to 
     carry out article 2.1 of the Agreement and the schedule of 
     duty reductions with respect to Jordan set out in Annex 2.1 
     of the Agreement.
       (b) Other Tariff Modifications.--The President may 
     proclaim--
       (1) such modifications or continuation of any duty,
       (2) such continuation of duty-free or excise treatment, or
       (3) such additional duties,
     as the President determines to be necessary or appropriate to 
     maintain the general level of reciprocal and mutually 
     advantageous concessions with respect to Jordan provided for 
     by the Agreement.

     SEC. 102. RULES OF ORIGIN.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Eligible articles.--
       (A) In general.--The reduction or elimination of any duty 
     imposed on any article by the United States provided for in 
     the Agreement shall apply only if--
       (i) that article is imported directly from Jordan into the 
     customs territory of the United States; and
       (ii) that article--

       (I) is wholly the growth, product, or manufacture of 
     Jordan; or
       (II) is a new or different article of commerce that has 
     been grown, produced, or manufactured in Jordan and meets the 
     requirements of subparagraph (B).

       (B) Requirements.--
       (i) General rule.--The requirements of this subparagraph 
     are that with respect to an article described in subparagraph 
     (A)(ii)(II), the sum of--

       (I) the cost or value of the materials produced in Jordan, 
     plus
       (II) the direct costs of processing operations performed in 
     Jordan,

     is not less than 35 percent of the appraised value of such 
     article at the time it is entered.
       (ii) Materials produced in united states.--If the cost or 
     value of materials produced in the customs territory of the 
     United States is included with respect to an article to which 
     this paragraph applies, an amount not to exceed 15 percent of 
     the appraised value of the article at the time it is entered 
     that is attributable to such United States cost or value may 
     be applied toward determining the percentage referred to in 
     clause (i).
       (2) Exclusions.--No article may be considered to meet the 
     requirements of paragraph (1)(A) by virtue of having merely 
     undergone--
       (A) simple combining or packaging operations; or
       (B) mere dilution with water or mere dilution with another 
     substance that does not materially alter the characteristics 
     of the article.
       (b) Direct Costs of Processing Operations.--
       (1) In general.--As used in this section, the term ``direct 
     costs of processing operations'' includes, but is not limited 
     to--
       (A) all actual labor costs involved in the growth, 
     production, manufacture, or assembly of the specific 
     merchandise, including fringe benefits, on-the-job training, 
     and the cost of engineering, supervisory, quality control, 
     and similar personnel; and
       (B) dies, molds, tooling, and depreciation on machinery and 
     equipment which are allocable to the specific merchandise.
       (2) Excluded costs.--The term ``direct costs of processing 
     operations'' does not include costs which are not directly 
     attributable to the merchandise concerned, or are not costs 
     of manufacturing the product, such as--
       (A) profit; and
       (B) general expenses of doing business which are either not 
     allocable to the specific merchandise or are not related to 
     the

[[Page H4872]]

     growth, production, manufacture, or assembly of the 
     merchandise, such as administrative salaries, casualty and 
     liability insurance, advertising, and salesmen's salaries, 
     commissions, or expenses.
       (c) Textile and Apparel Articles.--
       (1) In general.--A textile or apparel article imported 
     directly from Jordan into the customs territory of the United 
     States shall be considered to meet the requirements of 
     paragraph (1)(A) of subsection (a) only if--
       (A) the article is wholly obtained or produced in Jordan;
       (B) the article is a yarn, thread, twine, cordage, rope, 
     cable, or braiding, and--
       (i) the constituent staple fibers are spun in Jordan, or
       (ii) the continuous filament is extruded in Jordan;
       (C) the article is a fabric, including a fabric classified 
     under chapter 59 of the HTS, and the constituent fibers, 
     filaments, or yarns are woven, knitted, needled, tufted, 
     felted, entangled, or transformed by any other fabric-making 
     process in Jordan; or
       (D) the article is any other textile or apparel article 
     that is wholly assembled in Jordan from its component pieces.
       (2) Definition.--For purposes of paragraph (1), an article 
     is ``wholly obtained or produced in Jordan'' if it is wholly 
     the growth, product, or manufacture of Jordan.
       (3) Special rules.--
       (A) Certain made-up articles, textile articles in the 
     piece, and certain other textiles and textile articles.--
     Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(D) and except as provided in 
     subparagraphs (C) and (D) of this paragraph, subparagraph 
     (A), (B), or (C) of paragraph (1), as appropriate, shall 
     determine whether a good that is classified under one of the 
     following headings or subheadings of the HTS shall be 
     considered to meet the requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of 
     subsection (a): 5609, 5807, 5811, 6209.20.50.40, 6213, 6214, 
     6301, 6302, 6304, 6305, 6306, 6307.10, 6307.90, 6308, and 
     9404.90.
       (B) Certain knit-to-shape textiles and textile articles.--
     Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(D) and except as provided in 
     subparagraphs (C) and (D) of this paragraph, a textile or 
     apparel article which is knit-to-shape in Jordan shall be 
     considered to meet the requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of 
     subsection (a).
       (C) Certain dyed and printed textiles and textile 
     articles.--Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(D), a good 
     classified under heading 6117.10, 6213.00, 6214.00. 6302.22, 
     6302.29, 6302.52, 6302.53, 6302.59, 6302.92, 6302.93, 
     6302.99, 6303.92, 6303.99, 6304.19, 6304.93, 6304.99, 
     9404.90.85, or 9404.90.95 of the HTS, except for a good 
     classified under any such heading as of cotton or of wool or 
     consisting of fiber blends containing 16 percent or more by 
     weight of cotton, shall be considered to meet the 
     requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of subsection (a) if the 
     fabric in the good is both dyed and printed in Jordan, and 
     such dyeing and printing is accompanied by 2 or more of the 
     following finishing operations: bleaching, shrinking, 
     fulling, napping, decating, permanent stiffening, weighting, 
     permanent embossing, or moireing.
       (D) Fabrics of silk, cotton, manmade fiber or vegetable 
     fiber.-- Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(C), a fabric 
     classified under the HTS as of silk, cotton, man-made fiber, 
     or vegetable fiber shall be considered to meet the 
     requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of subsection (a) if the 
     fabric is both dyed and printed in Jordan, and such dyeing 
     and printing is accompanied by 2 or more of the following 
     finishing operations: bleaching, shrinking, fulling, napping, 
     decating, permanent stiffening, weighting, permanent 
     embossing, or moireing.
       (4) Multicountry rule.--If the origin of a textile or 
     apparel article cannot be determined under paragraph (1) or 
     (3), then that article shall be considered to meet the 
     requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of subsection (a) if--
       (A) the most important assembly or manufacturing process 
     occurs in Jordan; or
       (B) if the applicability of paragraph (1)(A) of subsection 
     (a) cannot be determined under subparagraph (A), the last 
     important assembly or manufacturing occurs in Jordan.
       (d) Exclusion.--A good shall not be considered to meet the 
     requirements of paragraph (1)(A) of subsection (a) if the 
     good--
       (1) is imported into Jordan, and, at the time of 
     importation, would be classified under heading 0805 of the 
     HTS; and
       (2) is processed in Jordan into a good classified under any 
     of subheadings 2009.11 through 2009.30 of the HTS.
       (e) Regulations.--The Secretary of the Treasury, after 
     consultation with the United States Trade Representative, 
     shall prescribe such regulations as may be necessary to carry 
     out this section.

                     TITLE II--RELIEF FROM IMPORTS

                     Subtitle A--General Provisions

     SEC. 201. DEFINITIONS.

       As used in this title:
       (1) Commission.--The term ``Commission'' means the United 
     States International Trade Commission.
       (2) Jordanian article.--The term ``Jordanian article'' 
     means an article that qualifies for reduction or elimination 
     of a duty under section 102.

     Subtitle B--Relief From Imports Benefiting From The Agreement

     SEC. 211. COMMENCING OF ACTION FOR RELIEF.

       (a) Filing of Petition.--
       (1) In general.--A petition requesting action under this 
     subtitle for the purpose of adjusting to the obligations of 
     the United States under the Agreement may be filed with the 
     Commission by an entity, including a trade association, firm, 
     certified or recognized union, or group of workers that is 
     representative of an industry. The Commission shall transmit 
     a copy of any petition filed under this subsection to the 
     United States Trade Representative.
       (2) Provisional relief.--An entity filing a petition under 
     this subsection may request that provisional relief be 
     provided as if the petition had been filed under section 
     202(a) of the Trade Act of 1974.
       (3) Critical circumstances.--Any allegation that critical 
     circumstances exist shall be included in the petition.
       (b) Investigation and Determination.--
       (1) In general.--Upon the filing of a petition under 
     subsection (a), the Commission, unless subsection (d) 
     applies, shall promptly initiate an investigation to 
     determine whether, as a result of the reduction or 
     elimination of a duty provided for under the Agreement, a 
     Jordanian article is being imported into the United States in 
     such increased quantities, in absolute terms or relative to 
     domestic production, and under such conditions that imports 
     of the Jordanian article alone constitute a substantial cause 
     of serious injury or threat thereof to the domestic industry 
     producing an article that is like, or directly competitive 
     with, the imported article.
       (2) Causation.--For purposes of this subtitle, a Jordanian 
     article is being imported into the United States in increased 
     quantities as a result of the reduction or elimination of a 
     duty provided for under the Agreement if the reduction or 
     elimination is a cause that contributes significantly to the 
     increase in imports. Such cause need not be equal to or 
     greater than any other cause.
       (c) Applicable Provisions.--The following provisions of 
     section 202 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2252) apply 
     with respect to any investigation initiated under subsection 
     (b):
       (1) Paragraphs (1)(B) and (3) of subsection (b).
       (2) Subsection (c).
       (3) Subsection (d).
       (d) Articles Exempt From Investigation.--No investigation 
     may be initiated under this section with respect to any 
     Jordanian article if import relief has been provided under 
     this subtitle with respect to that article.

     SEC. 212. COMMISSION ACTION ON PETITION.

       (a) Determination.--By no later than 120 days (180 days if 
     critical circumstances have been alleged) after the date on 
     which an investigation is initiated under section 211(b) with 
     respect to a petition, the Commission shall make the 
     determination required under that section.
       (b) Additional Finding and Recommendation if Determination 
     Affirmative.--If the determination made by the Commission 
     under subsection (a) with respect to imports of an article is 
     affirmative, the Commission shall find, and recommend to the 
     President in the report required under subsection (c), the 
     amount of import relief that is necessary to remedy or 
     prevent the injury found by the Commission in the 
     determination and to facilitate the efforts of the domestic 
     industry to make a positive adjustment to import competition. 
     The import relief recommended by the Commission under this 
     subsection shall be limited to that described in section 
     213(c).
       (c) Report to President.--No later than the date that is 30 
     days after the date on which a determination is made under 
     subsection (a) with respect to an investigation, the 
     Commission shall submit to the President a report that shall 
     include--
       (1) a statement of the basis for the determination;
       (2) dissenting and separate views; and
       (3) any finding made under subsection (b) regarding import 
     relief.
       (d) Public Notice.--Upon submitting a report to the 
     President under subsection (c), the Commission shall promptly 
     make public such report (with the exception of information 
     which the Commission determines to be confidential) and shall 
     cause a summary thereof to be published in the Federal 
     Register.
       (e) Applicable Provisions.--For purposes of this subtitle, 
     the provisions of paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of section 
     330(d) of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1330(d)) shall be 
     applied with respect to determinations and findings made 
     under this section as if such determinations and findings 
     were made under section 202 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 
     U.S.C. 2252).

     SEC. 213. PROVISION OF RELIEF.

       (a) In General.--No later than the date that is 30 days 
     after the date on which the President receives the report of 
     the Commission containing an affirmative determination of the 
     Commission under section 212(a), the President shall provide 
     relief from imports of the article that is the subject of 
     such determination to the extent that the President 
     determines necessary to prevent or remedy the injury found by 
     the Commission and to facilitate the efforts of the domestic 
     industry to make a positive adjustment to import competition, 
     unless the President determines that the provision of such 
     relief is not in the national economic interest of the United 
     States or, in extraordinary circumstances, that the provision 
     of such relief would cause serious harm to the national 
     security of the United States.
       (b) National Economic Interest.--The President may 
     determine under subsection

[[Page H4873]]

     (a) that providing import relief is not in the national 
     economic interest of the United States only if the President 
     finds that taking such action would have an adverse impact on 
     the United States economy clearly greater than the benefits 
     of taking such action.
       (c) Nature of Relief.--The import relief (including 
     provisional relief) that the President is authorized to 
     provide under this subtitle with respect to imports of an 
     article is--
       (1) the suspension of any further reduction provided for 
     under the United States Schedule to Annex 2.1 of the 
     Agreement in the duty imposed on that article;
       (2) an increase in the rate of duty imposed on such article 
     to a level that does not exceed the lesser of--
       (A) the column 1 general rate of duty imposed under the HTS 
     on like articles at the time the import relief is provided; 
     or
       (B) the column 1 general rate of duty imposed under the HTS 
     on like articles on the day before the date on which the 
     Agreement enters into force; or
       (3) in the case of a duty applied on a seasonal basis to 
     that article, an increase in the rate of duty imposed on the 
     article to a level that does not exceed the column 1 general 
     rate of duty imposed under the HTS on the article for the 
     corresponding season occurring immediately before the date on 
     which the Agreement enters into force.
       (d) Period of Relief.--The import relief that the President 
     is authorized to provide under this section may not exceed 4 
     years.
       (e) Rate After Termination of Import Relief.--When import 
     relief under this subtitle is terminated with respect to an 
     article--
       (1) the rate of duty on that article after such termination 
     and on or before December 31 of the year in which termination 
     occurs shall be the rate that, according to the United States 
     Schedule to Annex 2.1 of the Agreement for the staged 
     elimination of the tariff, would have been in effect 1 year 
     after the initiation of the import relief action under 
     section 211; and
       (2) the tariff treatment for that article after December 31 
     of the year in which termination occurs shall be, at the 
     discretion of the President, either--
       (A) the rate of duty conforming to the applicable rate set 
     out in the United States Schedule to Annex 2.1; or
       (B) the rate of duty resulting from the elimination of the 
     tariff in equal annual stages ending on the date set out in 
     the United States Schedule to Annex 2.1 for the elimination 
     of the tariff.

     SEC. 214. TERMINATION OF RELIEF AUTHORITY.

       (a) General Rule.--Except as provided in subsection (b), no 
     import relief may be provided under this subtitle after the 
     date that is 15 years after the date on which the Agreement 
     enters into force.
       (b) Exception.--Import relief may be provided under this 
     subtitle in the case of a Jordanian article after the date on 
     which such relief would, but for this subsection, terminate 
     under subsection (a), but only if the Government of Jordan 
     consents to such provision.

     SEC. 215. COMPENSATION AUTHORITY.

       For purposes of section 123 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 
     U.S.C. 2133), any import relief provided by the President 
     under section 213 shall be treated as action taken under 
     chapter 1 of title II of such Act.

     SEC. 216. SUBMISSION OF PETITIONS.

       A petition for import relief may be submitted to the 
     Commission under--
       (1) this subtitle;
       (2) chapter 1 of title II of the Trade Act of 1974; or
       (3) under both this subtitle and such chapter 1 at the same 
     time, in which case the Commission shall consider such 
     petitions jointly.

       Subtitle C--Cases Under Title II Of The Trade Act of 1974

     SEC. 221. FINDINGS AND ACTION ON JORDANIAN IMPORTS.

       (a) Effect of Imports.--If, in any investigation initiated 
     under chapter 1 of title II of the Trade Act of 1974, the 
     Commission makes an affirmative determination (or a 
     determination which the President may treat as an affirmative 
     determination under such chapter by reason of section 330(d) 
     of the Tariff Act of 1930), the Commission shall also find 
     (and report to the President at the time such injury 
     determination is submitted to the President) whether imports 
     of the article from Jordan are a substantial cause of serious 
     injury or threat thereof.
       (b) Presidential Action Regarding Jordanian Imports.--In 
     determining the nature and extent of action to be taken under 
     chapter 1 of title II of the Trade Act of 1974, the President 
     shall determine whether imports from Jordan are a substantial 
     cause of the serious injury found by the Commission and, if 
     such determination is in the negative, may exclude from such 
     action imports from Jordan.

     SEC. 222. TECHNICAL AMENDMENT.

       Section 202(a)(8) of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 
     2252(a)(8)) is amended in the first sentence--
       (1) by striking ``and part 1'' and inserting ``, part 1''; 
     and
       (2) by inserting before the period at the end ``, and title 
     II of the United States-Jordan Free Trade Area Implementation 
     Act''.

                       TITLE III--TEMPORARY ENTRY

     SEC. 301. NONIMMIGRANT TRADERS AND INVESTORS.

       Upon the basis of reciprocity secured by the Agreement, an 
     alien who is a national of Jordan (and any spouse or child 
     (as defined in section 101(b)(1) of the Immigration and 
     Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(b)(1)) of the alien, if 
     accompanying or following to join the alien) shall be 
     considered as entitled to enter the United States under and 
     in pursuance of the provisions of the Agreement as a 
     nonimmigrant described in section 101(a)(15)(E) of the 
     Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(E)), if 
     the entry is solely for a purpose described in clause (i) or 
     (ii) of such section and the alien is otherwise admissible to 
     the United States as such a nonimmigrant.

                      TITLE IV--GENERAL PROVISIONS

     SEC. 401. RELATIONSHIP OF THE AGREEMENT TO UNITED STATES AND 
                   STATE LAW.

       (a) Relationship of Agreement to United States Law.--
       (1) United states law to prevail in conflict.--No provision 
     of the Agreement, nor the application of any such provision 
     to any person or circumstance, that is inconsistent with any 
     law of the United States shall have effect.
       (2) Construction.--Nothing in this Act shall be construed--
       (A) to amend or modify any law of the United States, or
       (B) to limit any authority conferred under any law of the 
     United States,
     unless specifically provided for in this Act.
       (b) Relationship of Agreement to State Law.--
       (1) Legal challenge.--No State law, or the application 
     thereof, may be declared invalid as to any person or 
     circumstance on the ground that the provision or application 
     is inconsistent with the Agreement, except in an action 
     brought by the United States for the purpose of declaring 
     such law or application invalid.
       (2) Definition of state law.--For purposes of this 
     subsection, the term ``State law'' includes--
       (A) any law of a political subdivision of a State; and
       (B) any State law regulating or taxing the business of 
     insurance.
       (c) Effect of Agreement With Respect to Private Remedies.--
     No person other than the United States--
       (1) shall have any cause of action or defense under the 
     Agreement; or
       (2) may challenge, in any action brought under any 
     provision of law, any action or inaction by any department, 
     agency, or other instrumentality of the United States, any 
     State, or any political subdivision of a State on the ground 
     that such action or inaction is inconsistent with the 
     Agreement.

     SEC. 402. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

       There are authorized to be appropriated for each fiscal 
     year after fiscal year 2001 to the Department of Commerce not 
     more than $100,000 for the payment of the United States share 
     of the expenses incurred in dispute settlement proceedings 
     under article 17 of the Agreement.

     SEC. 403. IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS.

       After the date of enactment of this Act--
       (1) the President may proclaim such actions, and
       (2) other appropriate officers of the United States may 
     issue such regulations,
     as may be necessary to ensure that any provision of this Act, 
     or amendment made by this Act, that takes effect on the date 
     the Agreement enters into force is appropriately implemented 
     on such date, but no such proclamation or regulation may have 
     an effective date earlier than the date the Agreement enters 
     into force.

     SEC. 404. EFFECTIVE DATES; EFFECT OF TERMINATION.

       (a) Effective Dates.--Except as provided in subsection (b), 
     the provisions of this Act and the amendments made by this 
     Act take effect on the date the Agreement enters into force.
       (b) Exceptions.--Sections 1 through 3 and this title take 
     effect on the date of the enactment of this Act.
       (c) Termination of the Agreement.--On the date on which the 
     Agreement ceases to be in force, the provisions of this Act 
     (other than this subsection) and the amendments made by this 
     Act, shall cease to be effective.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from 
California (Mr. Thomas) and the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) 
each will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas).
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, first of all I want to thank the chairman of the 
Committee on the Judiciary, the gentleman from Wisconsin (Chairman 
Sensenbrenner), for their willingness to expedite this process. As you 
know, many committees share jurisdiction over issues; and on this 
particular piece of legislation, notwithstanding the Committee on the 
Judiciary's jurisdictional prerogative, they were willing to exchange 
letters with us so that we might move forward.
  As Chair of the Committee on Ways and Means, I include these letters 
for the record and thank the gentleman from Wisconsin (Chairman 
Sensenbrenner).


[[Page H4874]]




                                  Committee on Ways and Means,

                                    Washington, DC, July 30, 2001.
     Hon. F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.,
     Chairman, House of Representatives, Rayburn House Office 
         Building, Washington, DC.
       Dear Jim: Thank you for your letter regarding H.R. 2603, 
     the ``United States-Jordan Free Trade Area Implementation Act 
     of 2001.''
       As you have noted, the Committee on Ways and Means ordered 
     favorably reported, H.R. 2603, ``United States-Jordan Free 
     Trade Area Implementation Act of 2001,'' on Thursday, July 
     26, 2001. I appreciate your agreement to expedite the passage 
     of this legislation despite containing provisions within your 
     Committee's jurisdiction. I acknowledge your decision to 
     forego further action on the bill was based on the 
     understanding that it will not prejudice the Committee on the 
     Judiciary with respect to its jurisdictional prerogatives or 
     the appointment of conferees on this or similar legislation.
       Finally, I will include in the Congressional Record a copy 
     of our exchange of letters on this matter. Thank you for your 
     assistance and cooperation. We look forward to working with 
     you in the future.
           Best regards,
                                                      Bill Thomas,
     Chairman.
                                  ____



                                   Committee on the Judiciary,

                                    Washington, DC, July 30, 2001.
     Hon. William M. Thomas,
     Chairman, House Committee on Ways and Means, Longworth HOB, 
         House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
       Dear Bill: Thank you for working with me regarding H.R. 
     1484, the ``United States-Jordan Free Trade Areas 
     Implementation Act,'' which was referred to the Committee on 
     Ways and Means and the Committee on the Judiciary. As you 
     know, the Committee on the Judiciary has a jurisdictional 
     interest in this legislation, and I appreciate your 
     acknowledgment of that jurisdictional interest. Because I 
     understand the desire to have this legislation considered 
     expeditiously by the House and because the Committee does not 
     have a substantive concern with those provisions that fall 
     within its jurisdiction, I do not intend to hold a hearing or 
     markup on this legislation.
       In agreeing to waive consideration by our Committee, I 
     would expect you to agree that this procedural route should 
     not be construed to prejudice the Committee on the 
     Judiciary's jurisdictional interest and prerogatives on this 
     or any similar legislation and will not be considered as 
     precedent for consideration of matters of jurisdictional 
     interest to my Committee in the future. The Committee on the 
     Judiciary takes this action with the understanding that the 
     Committee's jurisdiction over the provisions within the 
     Committee's jurisdiction is in no way diminished or altered, 
     and that the Committee's right to the appointment of 
     conferees during any conference on the bill is preserved. I 
     would also expect your support in my request to the Speaker 
     for the appointment of conferees from my Committee with 
     respect to matters within the jurisdiction of my Committee 
     should a conference with the Senate be convened on this or 
     similar legislation.
       Again, thank you for your cooperation on this important 
     matter. I would appreciate your including our exchange of 
     letters in your Committee's report to accompany H.R. 1484.
           Sincerely,
                                      F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.,
                                                         Chairman.

  Mr. Speaker, approval of this agreement will do a number of things. 
One, it will provide some degree of recognition, and, if you will, a 
small acknowledgment of the gratitude that the people of the United 
States have for the people of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
  Jordan has played a constructive role through 2 generations of 
leadership in the Middle East. Their steadfast advocacy for peace and 
cooperation in fighting terrorism not only needs to be recognized in 
symbolic ways, but I believe with this particular trade pact it will be 
recognized in a very realistic way as well.
  Although Jordan is a small market, Jordan is a trusted friend and 
ally; and, as importantly, it is strongly committed to liberalizing its 
economy. Once this agreement is ratified, more than 50 percent of the 
tariffs between our two countries will be eliminated overnight, and 
then gradually the more difficult areas will be worked down to zero, so 
that at the end of the 10 years, it truly will be a free trade 
relationship.
  In addition to that, the quality of particular areas of this 
agreement are unsurpassed. The intellectual property rights provisions 
contain the highest levels of copyright protection ever included in a 
trade agreement. In addition, Jordan will be the first of our trading 
partners to bind itself to no customs duties on electronic commerce. 
Clearly this agreement will open Jordan's markets to U.S. services and 
U.S. markets to Jordan's products, whereby they can earn their way by 
trade.
  Mr. Speaker, the reason that we are now in front of the House is 
that, notwithstanding those excellent portions of the agreement that I 
indicated, there was an attempt in this particular agreement in dealing 
with our friend and ally to dictate the way in which sanctions would be 
dealt with; that is, to expand beyond historical parameters, that for 
the first time, this agreement includes treating labor and the 
environment equally with trade. That in itself is not necessarily not a 
good thing to do, but what it did do was lock in the old-fashioned 
trade sanctions, while expanding it to new areas. That, to the present 
administration, to this majority, is an unacceptable structure.
  Not wanting to go back and require a revision of the agreement, what 
we were able to do was to exchange between the Hashemite Government of 
Jordan and the United States Government an exchange of letters in 
which, notwithstanding the Clinton Administration's attempt to use this 
particular agreement to further its own agenda, neither the Government 
of the United States nor the Government of Jordan intend to exercise 
trade sanctions in the areas in the agreement, especially in terms of 
formal dispute resolution. Rather, they have committed themselves to a 
cooperative structure in the exchange of these two letters, especially 
looking for alternate mechanisms that will help to secure compliance 
without recourse to, as I said, those traditional trade sanctions that 
are the letter of the agreement.
  Mr. Speaker, I include for the Record the exchange of letters between 
the Hashemite Government of Jordan and the United States Government.

                                    U.S. Trade Representative,

                                    Washington, DC, July 23, 2001.
     His Excellency Marwan Muasher,
     Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the United 
         States.
       Dear Mr. Ambassador: I wish to share my Government's view 
     on implementation of the dispute settlement provisions 
     included in the Agreement between the United States of 
     America and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on the 
     Establishment of a Free Trade Area, signed on October 24, 
     2000.
       Given the close working relationship between our two 
     Governments, the volume of trade between our two countries, 
     and the clear rules of the Agreement, I would expect few if 
     any differences to arise between our two Governments over the 
     interpretation or application of the Agreement. Should any 
     differences arise under the Agreement, my Government will 
     make every effort to resolve them without recourse to formal 
     dispute settlement procedures.
       In particular, my Government would not expect or intend to 
     apply the Agreement's dispute settlement enforcement 
     procedures to secure its rights under the Agreement in a 
     manner that results in blocking trade. In light of the wide 
     range of our bilateral ties and the spirit of collaboration 
     that characterizes our relations, my Government considers 
     that appropriate measures for resolving any differences that 
     may arise regarding the Agreement would be bilateral 
     consultations and other procedures, particularly alternative 
     mechanisms, that will help to secure compliance without 
     recourse to traditional trade sanctions.
           Sincerely,
                                               Robert B. Zoellick,
     U.S. Trade Representative.
                                  ____

                                          Embassy of the Hashemite


                                            Kingdom of Jordan,

                                    Washington, DC, July 23, 2001.
     Hon. Robert B. Zoellick,
     U.S. Trade Representative,
     United States of America.
       Dear Mr. Ambassador: I wish to share my Government's views 
     on implementation of the dispute settlement provisions 
     included in the Agreement between the Hashemite Kingdom of 
     Jordan and the United States of America on the Establishment 
     of a Free Trade Area, signed on October 24, 2000.
       Given the close working relationship between our two 
     Governments, the volume of trade between our two countries, 
     and the clear rules of the Agreement, I would expect few if 
     any differences to arise between our two Governments over the 
     interpretation or application of the Agreement. Should any 
     differences arise under the Agreement, my Government will 
     make every effort to resolve them without recourse to formal 
     dispute settlement procedures.
       In particular, my Government would not expect or intend to 
     apply the Agreement's dispute settlement enforcement 
     procedures to secure its rights under the Agreement in a 
     manner that results in blocking trade. In light of the wide 
     range of our bilateral ties and the spirit of collaboration 
     that characterizes our relations, my Government considers 
     that appropriate measures for resolving any differences that 
     may arise regarding

[[Page H4875]]

     the Agreement would be bilateral consultations and other 
     procedures, particularly alternative mechanisms, that will 
     help to secure compliance without recourse to traditional 
     trade sanctions.
           Sincerely,
                                                   Marwan Muasher,
                                                       Ambassador.

  Mr. Speaker, with these letters, it means that, notwithstanding the 
narrow, specific wording of the document, the attempt to drive a 
particular political agenda with this agreement, in which all are in 
favor of increasing trade to the point of free and open trade between 
the United States and Jordan, this agreement becomes acceptable, 
especially when this is the first instance in which the 21st century 
needs to be addressed with clearly a better way to deal with perceived 
violations and actual violations of agreements.
  Alternate mechanisms beyond the old-fashioned 19th and early 20th 
century tools are really what is needed to develop and grow trade in 
this century. I am pleased to say that with the exchange of letters, 
notwithstanding the specifics of this agreement, we have begun to move 
down that direction; and we continue to work together to present to 
this House a Trade Promotion Authority which builds on this exchange of 
letters between the Government of the United States and the Hashemite 
Government of Jordan.
  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, this agreement indeed is an important one. It is 
important in terms of national security. Jordan is important in the 
quest for peace and security in the Mideast.
  This agreement is important economically. A healthy Jordanian economy 
is important in and of itself, and for Jordan to play a constructive 
role in the Middle East.
  This agreement is important because it addresses essential 
ingredients of the economic relationship between our two nations.
  It is important because it recognizes that included in that economic 
relationship are labor and environmental standards.
  This agreement is so important that it should have been presented to 
this House for approval many months ago. The delay was because some did 
not like the provisions relating to labor and the environment. That 
position was and is misguided.
  Domestic labor markets and environmental standards are relevant to 
trade and competition within a nation and competition and trade between 
nations. That has become increasingly true as the volume of 
international trade has increased dramatically and as nations with very 
different economic structures trade and compete with one another. 
Recognition of that reality is simply inescapable in this era of trade. 
It is not a political question, it is a matter of sheer economic 
reality.
  The Government of Jordan was willing from the start, and I emphasize 
that, to address that reality. Some in the United States were not. As a 
result, after several different notions have been suggested, there has 
been an exchange of letters between the two governments. They do not 
amend the agreement, they do not forego any of its provisions; they say 
what their intention and expectations are as to implementation of all 
the provisions in the agreement.
  Both nations have strong practices on labor and environmental 
standards. The governments say in the letters that if either fails to 
meet their commitments to enforce such standards, or any other 
provisions of the agreement, and I emphasize that, any of the other 
provisions of the agreement, they do not expect or intend to use 
traditional trade sanctions to enforce them.
  That was unnecessary and unfortunate. It is unwise to say that 
regardless of the violations of a trade agreement, the expectation is 
that any method of enforcement will not be used. Trade sanctions are 
always a last resort, but to set a precedent in any agreement that 
under no circumstances is there any expectation that they may have to 
be used as to any provision is a mistake, an unwise precedent.
  It was unnecessary because the agreement carefully sets up a 
framework for all kinds of consultations and mediation over a long 
period of time before either party could use sanctions, and only after 
recurring violations affecting trade, and only with appropriate and 
commensurate measures.
  I support our approving this agreement because of the importance of 
the U.S.-Jordanian relationship and because the agreement within its 
four corners still stands.

                              {time}  1030

  But cutting corners on the important issues of labor and 
environmental standards and trade agreements is a step backwards for 
future constructive action on trade. But today, to proceed on Jordan is 
important, and we should do so.
  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I would say to the gentleman the only unfortunate circumstance in 
this agreement was the unfortunate consequences of taking advantage to 
push a domestic agenda on trade with as important and vital a strategic 
partner as Jordan. We would have preferred that this domestic agenda on 
trade be done in a slightly different way. The letters, in fact, go a 
long way toward correcting that attempt, to grab the initiative on a 
domestic agenda on trade by using this agreement.
  Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to yield 2\1/2\ minutes to the 
gentleman from California (Mr. Dreier), one of the leading advocates 
and spokesmen for trade in the House of Representatives and the 
chairman of the Committee on Rules.
  Mr. DREIER. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me this 
time.
  I, of course, was going to begin by talking about the great 
importance of bringing about stability in the region and the benefits 
of this U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement to economic growth and all, 
but since both the gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas) and the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) have gotten to the issue of labor 
and the environment and this very important exchange of letters, and I 
congratulate the chairman for having put that arrangement together. I 
think it is important to underscore why it is that there seems to be 
this disagreement.
  We believe very passionately that the best way to deal with those 
important issues of labor and the environment is through economic 
growth. Mr. Speaker, there is a great arrogance that exists as we 
proceed with this debate on trade for the United States of America to 
try to impose on developing nations around the world, nations that are 
struggling to get onto the first rung of the economic ladder, standards 
with which they cannot comply. They cannot comply.
  I recall so well, following the very important December 1999 Seattle 
ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization, the cover of the 
Economist Magazine the week after that meeting was very telling. It 
said, when they talked about the imposition of sanctions, when 
President Clinton talked about the imposition of sanctions on issues of 
labor and the environment, the cover had a picture and above that 
picture was the caption: ``Who Is the Real Loser at Seattle?'' The 
photograph, Mr. Speaker, was of a starving baby in Bangladesh.
  It is so apparent that those countries which we hope to help get into 
the international community are being prevented because of, as the 
gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas) said appropriately, the 
imposition of a domestic agenda on other nations. It is unfortunate 
that Jordan was caught in the middle on this issue; however, we do want 
to see environmental standards and worker rights improved in Jordan.
  We believe that the economic growth that is going to follow this kind 
of effort is important for the stability of the region. It is very 
important for bringing about greater stability as it expands throughout 
the Middle East. I hope this is just really the second, following the 
U.S.-Israel Free Trade Agreement, the second in steps that will help us 
bring about the very, very important economic growth and stability that 
is needed there.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself 1\1/2\ minutes.
  Mr. Speaker, I want to move on to other speakers, but I want the 
Record to be clear: I was in meetings with the Jordanian Government 
from the outset, at least in discussions with this

[[Page H4876]]

body, and the King said they were willing to negotiate on labor and 
environmental standards. Do not talk about shoving this down somebody's 
throat. It is not true.
  Secondly, imposition of our standards? Nonsense. When it comes to 
core labor standards, these are ILO standards that most nations have 
already agreed to.
  Child labor? Forced labor? The ability of workers to associate and 
organize? That is imposing our standards? These are international 
standards. Are we imposing our standards when we insist on intellectual 
property or on subsidies in agriculture? The gentleman uses a different 
standard when it comes to one or another.
  Environmental standards. The President withdrew from Kyoto because 
developing nations were not in the Kyoto Accord, and now someone comes 
to this floor and says because we want countries to enforce the 
environmental standards, in this case, their own, it is a domestic 
agenda or it is a political agenda. It is not. This relates to the 
terms in competition of countries, and there are some basic standards 
that need to be applied and to be implemented.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield 2\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Maryland 
(Mr. Cardin).
  Mr. CARDIN. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me this 
time.
  Mr. Speaker, I strongly support the agreement that is before us. 
Jordan is a friend of the United States in the Middle East. They are 
moving forward in opening direct trade between their country and 
Israel, and they are truly our ally in seeking peace in the Middle East 
and in fighting terrorist activities.
  I also support this agreement because it is a good agreement. It is a 
good agreement from the point of view of the United States. We already 
have a Free Trade Agreement with Israel. This Free Trade Agreement will 
open up opportunities for American producers and manufacturers. And we 
have made progress, as the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) has 
pointed out, on labor and environment; that is, removing barriers to 
fair trade because of the standards of other countries being far below 
the standards here in the United States. That works to the disadvantage 
of U.S. manufacturers and producers. We made progress in this agreement 
because Jordan agreed to enforce its own laws in the trade agreement. 
What is wrong with that?
  Now, Mr. Speaker, I must tell my colleagues, I am concerned about the 
letters that were exchanged between Jordan and the United States that 
the distinguished Chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means put in 
the Record. These letters were requested by the United States. Make no 
mistake about it, this was not Jordan's idea, this was the United 
States' idea. It was because we were concerned that we were painting 
new territory in allowing us to have in the core agreement labor and 
the environmental standards.
  Mr. Speaker, if we are going to enforce labor and environmental 
standards, they have to be in the core agreement. We have seen that 
every time we have tried to put them in side agreements, it has been 
ineffective in enforcing the standards that we told the American public 
that we were fighting for. This letter puts labor and environment as a 
second tier issue. That is wrong. It should not be a second tier issue. 
Most of the other provisions in the Jordanian agreement can be enforced 
through WTO since they are in the multinational agreement.
  Mr. Speaker, this letter, I hope, will not be precedent for the 
future, because we can make progress in bilateral agreements on 
increasing world standards for labor and environment; we can make 
progress so that American producers and manufacturers and farmers can 
effectively compete internationally by raising international standards 
in labor and environment. We make progress in the bilateral agreement 
such as with Jordan so that we can move the WTO, the multinational 
agreements, so that they can move forward in these areas.
  Mr. Speaker, this is a good agreement. It should be supported. We 
made a mistake by requesting the exchange of letters.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, I can understand the perplexity of my friends on the 
other side over the letters in which they say the letters were not 
Jordan's idea. Well, let us return to the negotiation between the 
Clinton administration and the Jordanians.
  I cannot believe it was the Jordanians' idea to lay on the table old-
fashioned sanctions in which products are used to retaliate against 
violations extended to labor and the environment. I have a hunch it was 
the Clinton administration that laid these on the table. And, of 
course, my friend from Michigan then says, they did not object to them. 
Of course they are not going to object to them. They are going to say, 
yes, to whatever is laid on the table.
  So I do not think the argument about basic standards being 
implemented is the issue. It was the fact that the Jordanians were 
required to agree to a sanctions structure that was imposed upon them 
by the Clinton administration. The letters were not Jordan's idea, but 
the basic document was not Jordan's idea either.
  What we have is an ability to reach agreement and move forward. 
Frankly, we would not be here today without the letters. So I think the 
letters were a very good thing.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Pennsylvania 
(Mr. English), a member of the Committee on Ways and Means.
  Mr. ENGLISH. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me this 
time.
  Mr. Speaker, our relationship with Jordan is a strategic one, and 
that alone is reason enough for this trade agreement to be desirable. 
But H.R. 2603 is also a model for how we can pursue a balanced trade 
relationship with a developing country whose legal system and workplace 
environment is radically different from our own.
  This trade agreement with Jordan represents the first free trade 
agreement with an Arab Nation and will give us closer trade ties to the 
Arab world. Trading with Jordan will be mutually beneficial and 
strengthen them as our ally.
  But Jordan also represents a country that plays a critical role in 
the Middle East peace process. Beyond that, this agreement negotiated 
by the last administration provides us with a sensible and balanced 
approach to addressing blue and green issues in trade agreements, 
discouraging a race to the bottom by countries seeking to attract 
investment and lure jobs.
  This agreement will benefit not only Jordanians, but American workers 
by creating an export market for high value-added U.S. products in a 
nation that cannot make these products for themselves. The bill phases 
out all tariffs during a 10-year period and establishes the first-ever 
bilateral commitment regarding e-commerce. It also addresses 
intellectual property rights and the protections for copyrights, 
trademarks and patents, as well as makes a specific commitment to 
opening markets in the services sector.
  But as a truly inclusive trade agreement, H.R. 2603 addresses various 
labor and environmental concerns. This agreement does not seek to place 
further labor and environmental regulations on Jordan, but rather, 
requires that they enforce the law that they already have on their 
books. Jordan cannot relax environmental standards to attract trade, 
and they have agreed to fully enforce national labor laws. This 
agreement provides us with a model, perhaps not the only one, but a 
very promising one, for engaging in fair trade with a developing 
country, and I urge my colleagues to support it.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the very distinguished 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Doggett).
  Mr. DOGGETT. Mr. Speaker, I certainly support this agreement, as I 
did in committee, but the handling of this bill really represents 
another foreign policy failure for the Bush Administration.
  During the last week alone, this Administration has stood alone and 
isolated from 178 other countries on how to resolve climate change and 
global warming. It has stood alone and isolated from seven years of 
negotiations about how to make an international agreement on germ 
warfare more effective. And it reasserted its intention to unilaterally 
reject the Antiballistic

[[Page H4877]]

Missile Treaty that has contributed to three decades of peace.
  Little wonder that this week's conservative Economist magazine raises 
the question: ``Stop the World, I Want to Get Off: Has George Bush Ever 
Met a Treaty that He Liked?'' Well, it is not this one, because today 
the Republicans here on the House floor display their real paranoia 
about any attempt to protect workers and the environment from the 
potential adverse consequences of international trade.
  Mr. Speaker, this is an outmoded trade policy that the Bush 
Administration is advancing at the very time that a number of our 
trading partners are recognizing that environmental issues need to be 
addressed as we look at the question of international trade. It is a 
policy that is consistent only with the Bush Administration's anti-
environmental attitudes and policies here in the United States.

                              {time}  1045

  Trade is certainly vital to our country, but if more international 
commerce with a particular country leads to the reliance on more child 
labor or the destruction of rain forests or endangered species, those 
are important considerations to be avoided through negotiation.
  This agreement with the small, but important, country of Jordan 
fortunately did not involve any of those particular concerns; but the 
Clinton Administration, wisely working with the country of Jordan, 
provided that if there were repeated violations of a country's own 
laws, not our laws in Jordan but Jordan's laws in Jordan to protect 
workers and the environment, then that could be the subject of trade 
sanctions.
  That scares the Republicans to death, the very thought that on an 
international level we might give consideration to the way trade 
impacts workers, child laborers, the environment, endangered species, 
rain forests, or other sensitive environmental areas.
  They are opposed to even the most modest safeguards like those 
contained in this agreement, so they have not fast-tracked this 
agreement; rather, they have slow-tracked it. They have slow-tracked it 
for the last six or seven months, refusing to present this trade 
agreement to the Congress to act upon.
  Today they rush it to the floor with minimum debate because they do 
not want any attention on the contradictions in their own trade policy. 
That is a trade policy of slow-tracking that tells us a great deal 
about this so-called fast track proposal.
  I support more trade, but not by granting President Bush a blank 
check, open-ended trade authority to do anything he wants. It is clear 
from his rejection of these modest safeguards that he will not do right 
by workers and the environment unless we put strict conditions on any 
trade negotiating authority that Congress decides to delegate to him.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to yield 1\1/2\ minutes to 
the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Knollenberg).
  Mr. KNOLLENBERG. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding time 
to me.
  I rise in very strong support of this agreement, Mr. Speaker, and I 
urge my colleagues on both sides to support passage.
  The U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement will provide economic benefits 
to both countries. That is what we are really here about. This 
agreement will eliminate tariffs on virtually all trade between the two 
countries within 10 years. Passage of this agreement offers the 
prospect of rapid growth in the U.S.-Jordan trade relationship.
  In addition to economic benefits, this agreement will help to 
strengthen our association with a key ally in the Middle East. Jordan 
is a trusted friend and ally of the U.S. and is strongly committed to 
liberalizing its economy. The agreement provides important support to 
Jordan's commitment.
  In addition, the U.S.-Jordan FTA builds on other U.S. initiatives in 
the region designed to encourage economic development and regional 
integration. This includes, of course, the 1985 U.S.-Israel Free Trade 
Agreement and its extension to areas administered by the Palestinian 
Authority in 1996.
  Again, Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to vote yes on this 
agreement.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Ohio 
(Mr. Brown).
  Mr. BROWN of Ohio. Mr. Speaker, I thank my friend, the gentleman from 
Michigan, for yielding time to me.
  Let me preface my statement by saying that I support the Jordan-U.S. 
trade agreement and plan to vote for it. That said, this agreement 
illustrates why this Congress must not relinquish our right to amend 
future trade agreements and why we must vote down Fast Track.
  When we look closely at this, we see the fingerprints of the brand-
name drug industry all over it. This agreement provides protections for 
the drug industry more stringent than those established by the World 
Trade Organization.
  Look at the fine print of section 20 of Article 4 on intellectual 
property. Not only does this agreement impose barriers to generic 
access in Jordan that are greater than those in place here, it prevents 
the United States from using a WTO sanction mechanism, compulsory 
licensing, to bring down grossly inflated drug prices.
  The Jordan trade pact blocks the U.S. from ever enacting compulsory 
licensing law, now or in the future, to combat excessive drug prices.
  While Congress waited for the trade agreement to be negotiated, our 
drug industry convinced the U.S. Trade Representative to tie our hands 
and to tie Jordan's hands. It is outrageous that the drug industry can 
have this kind of influence, particularly when their pricing practices 
are robbing Americans blind. But that is what happens when Congress has 
too little oversight in trade agreements.
  If Fast Track passes, what will the future hold once the drug 
industry and other special interests know that Congress cannot amend 
the trade agreement? How many poison pills will we have to swallow or 
will the American public have to swallow?
  It is provisions like these, slipped into trade agreements, which are 
the reason why Fast Track is such a threat to the best interests of our 
constituents. While trade agreements go to great lengths to protect 
investors and protect property rights, these agreements rarely include 
enforceable provisions to protect workers in the U.S. or abroad. Like 
the Jordan agreement, corporations will slip provisions into the text 
that will abuse the most vulnerable of society.
  Three years ago, Fast Track was defeated in Congress, 243 to 180. 
Vote for the Jordan trade agreement but defeat Fast Track, which allows 
bad provisions in good trade agreements.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from 
Oregon (Mr. Blumenauer).
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the gentleman's courtesy in 
yielding time to me to speak on this issue.
  Mr. Speaker, I have a slightly different perspective than my friend, 
the gentleman from Ohio. I happen to believe very strongly that trade 
promotion authority is important and that our future, not just from our 
region but for our country and for developing nations around the world, 
lies in fairer, freer trade.
  I supported the trade promotion authority for the last 
administration. I hope to be able to support it for this 
administration.
  But I would look at this agreement today as a model for an approach 
that we can have trade promotion authority, which I think is important, 
but do it in a way that brings us together, where we can have 300 or 
400 people on this floor, as the gentleman from Michigan is looking for 
ways to be able to express these concerns about environment, about 
worker standards.
  This agreement that we have before us can be a template in a way that 
does not divide us but actually strengthens free trade. It brings it in 
a way that does not have to have a partisan edge to it, and actually 
encourages countries to be able to develop their own labor and 
environmental standards.
  We have a number of companies around the world that are doing 
pioneering work in their own work to be able to advance higher 
standards for the environment and the workplace; international 
corporations that are showing the way in terms of how to treat their 
employees in patterns of compensation and worker safety.
  I would strongly urge that we approve this agreement before us, and

[[Page H4878]]

that we look at this as a template for how we ought to put together 
trade promotion authority.
  I commend the gentleman from Michigan for the work that he is doing 
on our side of the aisle to have a broader conversation. He, I think, 
has shown through his work on China that there are ways to bring us 
together. I encourage this Chamber to look at this agreement as a way 
that we can do this in a way that we will not lose the opportunity to 
develop the consensus. I thank the gentleman for his efforts.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from Arizona (Mr. Kolbe), who through his time and talent has 
assisted for a long time. I look forward to working with him as we move 
trade promotion authority.
  Mr. KOLBE. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding time to 
me.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong support of the U.S.-Jordan Free 
Trade Agreement. I want to begin by thanking President Clinton, 
acknowledging his role in negotiating this agreement. I want to praise 
President Bush for bringing this agreement forward in a determined 
fashion.
  I really want to commend the chairman of the Committee on Ways and 
Means, the gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas), and the gentleman 
from the subcommittee, the gentleman from Illinois (Mr. Crane), and the 
ranking member, the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin), for their 
bipartisan support in bringing this agreement forward.
  Mr. Speaker, this agreement is critical to the foreign policy of the 
United States. It is of enormous political significance to us. Jordan 
is a vital ally of ours in the Middle East. It has been in the past; 
and it continues to be a leader in this peace process, this Middle East 
peace process.
  Let there be no doubt, we have relied heavily on Jordan to play a 
constructive role in building peace in the region, and certainly the 
least we can do today is extend our hand in free trade.
  This role that Jordan has played is a very difficult one. It is 
located geographically between Iraq and Syria and the west bank of the 
Jordan. Over half of its population is of Palestinian descent. In 
short, it is in the heart of a region that is plagued by centuries of 
conflict. It lies on the edge of a potential conflict all along all of 
its borders.
  Despite this, it has had strong political leadership over the years 
that has taken repeatedly difficult steps towards peace, started by 
former King Hussein with a peace agreement between Jordan and Israel in 
1994, and that continues today under the leadership of his son, King 
Abdullah II.
  We must implement this free trade agreement, not because of the 
economic benefits the U.S. may receive, although there are some. We 
must implement this agreement because it will help Jordan develop 
economically and become more prosperous. With the prosperity and the 
prospect for economic stability, we can help it continue to lead by 
example in a region where greater, stronger leadership is so 
desperately needed.
  Just a couple of months ago, I led a delegation of members of the 
Committee on Appropriations to Israel, Egypt, and to Jordan. In all of 
those countries, we appreciated the importance of trade as a driver of 
regional economic growth.
  Mr. Speaker, this is an important agreement. I urge my colleagues to 
support it.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from 
Michigan (Mr. Bonior), our distinguished whip.
  Mr. BONIOR. Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for yielding time to 
me, and I thank him and others who worked on this agreement.
  Mr. Speaker, the agreement we face today is a good agreement. It 
furthers our relationship with our friends and allies; and it increases 
the prospect, as we have heard, for economic and political stability in 
the Middle East. It contains modest yet meaningful standards for worker 
rights and the environment. For the first time, Mr. Speaker, these 
values are considered as terms of the agreement, just as tariffs, just 
as intellectual property traditionally have been.
  But what I am concerned about is the interjection of these side 
letters. The administration, I think, is undermining a good deal with 
these side letters. The side letter effectively removes the possibility 
of enforcing labor and environmental violations by tough enforcement 
mechanisms of sanctions. The side letter places a higher value on 
commercial provisions which are still enforceable by sanctions through 
the WTO.
  Overall, the side letters suggest that we value our goods over our 
workers. It has been the nexus, the heart of the problem we have had on 
the trade issue. This was a solid agreement negotiated in good faith by 
two strategic friends and partners. It deserves to be implemented as 
such.
  This agreement was once a good step forward, including worker rights 
and environmental standards in a trade agreement. Now, with the side 
letter, it becomes yet another reflection of the trade policies of the 
past that deny the realities of today.
  We must remember the administration's actions to gut these modest 
worker rights and environmental provisions when we look to future 
agreements in this Congress, especially Fast Track. Fast Track requires 
us to put all our faith in Presidential authority. The action on the 
Jordan agreement should warn us against that. This administration gives 
with one hand while trying to take away with the other.
  Mr. Speaker, I will vote for this trade agreement because I believe 
in the deal that was negotiated, and that is on the floor today. It is 
a step forward. But I am deeply disappointed with the administration's 
attempt to undermine the deal and to turn the clock back.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to yield 1\1/2\ minutes to 
the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Cantor).
  Mr. CANTOR. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding time to 
me.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H.R. 2603, which, in a 
comprehensive fashion, eliminates barriers to bilateral trade in goods 
and services between the United States and the Hashemite Kingdom of 
Jordan.
  I would posit that this agreement does bring us together by providing 
a positive structure for dealing with trade violations, rather than 
controversial and potentially ineffective sanctions.
  Economic prosperity, stability, and religious tolerance form the 
foundation of our foreign policy in the Middle East. In a region where 
daily violence has almost become a fact of life, the establishment of 
economic cooperation is a vitally important aspect of creating an 
environment where the nations of the Middle East can exist in peace and 
with prosperity.
  This agreement will enable the United States to have a productive 
economic exchange with a valuable trading partner that has been a 
stabilizing factor in that region. The spirit of bilateral economic 
cooperation between these two countries will be beneficial to both our 
nations, and sends a signal to the world that nations that share our 
values and desire for peace will prosper.
  Jordan has been a steadfast partner for promoting peace and fighting 
terrorism, and I welcome this agreement.

                              {time}  1100

  I commend the gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas) for his 
leadership on the issue and again urge my colleagues to support this 
important legislation.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from 
Virginia (Mr. Moran).
  Mr. MORAN of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I thank my good friend, my very 
distinguished colleague from Michigan, Mr. Levin, for yielding me this 
time.
  I strongly support this resolution that approves the U.S.-Jordan Free 
Trade Agreement. The United States rarely gets a chance to score a 
clear victory that will promote economic growth, regional stability, 
reward a trusted ally, and affirm our most basic democratic values. We 
have such an opportunity right now with this agreement. Even though 
Jordan is only our 100th largest trading partner, the Jordan Free Trade 
Agreement is crucial to our national interest.
  First, this agreement holds the potential of jump-starting a process 
of trade liberalization that has slowed down considerably since 1995. 
Under this agreement, duties on almost all goods would be phased out 
over a 10-year period. Jordan commits itself to

[[Page H4879]]

opening its markets fully to U.S. manufacturers, farmers, and service 
providers. The Jordan FTA is the first such agreement ever to address 
issues related to electronic commerce and the Internet, with Jordan 
promising to ratify international agreements ensuring the protection of 
software and audio recordings on the Internet. Also under this 
agreement both sides pledge much greater openness in the resolution of 
disputes.
  More significant than this contribution to open trade is what the 
Jordan FTA should mean for our continuing pursuit of peace and 
stability in the Middle East. Since coming to power after the death of 
his legendary father, King Hussein, 2 years ago, King Abdullah has 
launched a series of progressive reforms intended to modernize Jordan's 
economy. The nation has joined the World Trade Organization, 
deregulated some of its service industries, and strengthened its 
intellectual property laws. It has also stood with the United States 
politically, helping to enforce our trade embargo against Iraq, and 
serving as a voice of moderation among the Arab states.
  By entering into this agreement, we are promoting regional economic 
growth, and sending a strong and positive signal of support to a 
crucial ally. If we were to delay this trade agreement that the 
previous Clinton administration worked out so constructively, it would 
send the opposite and wrong signal. This trade agreement marks a new 
approach to addressing labor and environmental provisions that I think 
is reasonable and realistic.
  Approval of this agreement should give us some momentum now to move 
forward on our larger bipartisan trade agenda, most notably trade 
promotion authority. Global agreements can be values driven as well as 
profits driven, and that is why I urge my colleagues to approve this 
agreement and reaffirm our commitment to this vital ally in the Middle 
East.
  Mr. LEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield the balance of my time, a long 30 
seconds, to the gentleman from Washington (Mr. McDermott).
  Mr. McDERMOTT. Mr. Speaker, so much to say.
  Mr. Speaker, I am here to vote for the Jordan treaty, but the world 
will little note nor long remember what we do here today. But what was 
important about today was the President of the United States showed his 
hand. He is not trustworthy. He will take an agreement, and when it is 
being out here on the floor he will then write a letter and undo it.
  Now, let us give them trade promotion authority, shall we? He will go 
and negotiate, he will bring a treaty in here, we will vote for it, and 
as we vote ``aye'' or ``no,'' he will be putting in the mailbox at the 
White House a letter to somebody saying, ``I didn't mean it, guys. This 
does not really count. You know we didn't really mean what's in this.''
  Watch and remember what happened with those letters on this issue. 
Vote for this but do not forget.
  Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas) 
has 2 minutes remaining.
  Mr. THOMAS. Well, gee, Mr. Speaker, I guess I am a little bit 
confused. Apparently the gentleman from Washington thinks that 
President Bush negotiated this agreement. Perhaps I should shock him 
into reality and indicate that the proper response on this floor should 
have been shame on you. Shame on your administration in trying to push 
your domestic trade agenda by making an offer to Jordan you knew they 
could not refuse. What kind of diplomatic relationship is that?
  The mistake of using Jordan as a pawn has partially been corrected by 
the exchange of letters. And so when my colleague stands up here and 
says piously, gee, we are trying to reverse an agreement in which we 
just want some standards for labor and the environment, I would note, 
as I said at the very beginning, there is nothing wrong with that. We 
need to move in that direction. Get over it. The previous 
administration tried to sneak an agreement through, and it was not 
done. Now, let us sit down and work together and talk about not using 
antiquated sanctions in resolving these new issues.
  The bottom line is this, Mr. Speaker. This agreement is on the 
suspension calendar. We all agree that our friend and ally is long 
overdue this recognition. Let us vote ``yes'' on H.R. 2603.
  Mr. GILMAN. Mr. Speaker, the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement with 
the United States is good for Jordan, good for the United States and 
good for peace in the Middle East. By eliminating trade barriers 
between both our countries, it will increase trade. In doing so, it 
will strengthen one of the most constructive regimes in the Middle East 
regarding the Peace Process.
  Under King Abdullah's leadership, Jordan has already made significant 
strides in modernizing its economy and in opening its markets to the 
outside world. For example, Jordan has embarked on a major 
privatization program that includes its telecommunications sector, and 
has improved its record on intellectual property rights.
  This agreement will accelerate that process by guaranteeing:
  The elimination of all tariffs on industrial goods and farm products 
within 10 years;
  Free trade in services, giving American service providers full access 
to services of key importance;
  Modern intellectual property rights commitments, which will provide 
prospects for technology-based industries, copyright-based industries, 
and pharmaceutical companies;
  A joint commitment to promote a liberalized trade environment for e-
commerce that should encourage investment in new technologies, and 
avoid imposing customs duties on electronic transmissions.
  Just as Jordan has been a model for constructive participation in the 
Peace Process, the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement can help to make it 
an economic model for the rest of the Arab world.
  Mr. TOM DAVIS of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise to support H.R. 2603, 
the United States-Jordan Free Trade Implementation Act.
  Jordan is a small Arab country with abundant natural resources such 
as oil. The Persian Gulf crisis aggravated Jordan's already serious 
economic problems, forcing the government to put a hiatus on the 
International monetary Fund program, stop most debt payments, and 
suspend rescheduling negotiations. However, the economy rebounded in 
1992, thanks to the influx of capital repatriated by workers returning 
from the Gulf.
  After averaging 9 percent in 1992-95, GDP growth averaged only 2 
percent during 1996-99. In an attempt to spur growth, King Abdallah of 
Jordan has undertaken some economic reform measures, including partial 
privatization of some state-owned enterprises. These actions culminated 
with Jordan's entry in January 2000 into the World Trade Organization 
(WTO).
  I have personally met with King Abdallah on several occasions. I was 
pleased to host the King and Queen in 1999, when they visited Northern 
Virginia to discuss possible investment opportunities in Jordan with 
regional high technology and telecommunications companies. The King and 
representatives from his government showed a keen interest in exploring 
trade opportunities with our technology sector. The attendees, which 
included CEOs and Presidents of national high-tech organizations and 
companies, were overwhelmingly impressed with the King's knowledge of 
the industry and his openness towards working with them.
  Mr. Speaker, I believe passage of H.R. 2306 will have significant and 
positive economic and political impacts for both Jordan and the United 
States. The U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement (FTA) will increase levels 
of trade in services for both nations, boost the Jordanian economy, 
contribute to easing unemployment, attract foreign direct investments 
from both U.S. and other foreign-based companies, and reinforce 
momentum for additional economic reform in Jordan. In the year 2000, 
total bilateral trade between the U.S. and Jordan was approximately 
$385 million, with U.S. exports to Jordan accounting for about 80 
percent or $310 million of this total. In the same year, U.S. imports 
from Jordan totaled $73 million and accounted for approximately 20 
percent of total bilateral trade.
  The FTA builds on other U.S. initiatives in the region that are 
designed to encourage economic development and regional integration, 
including: the 1996 extension of the U.S.-Israel Free Trade Agreement 
to areas administered by the Palestinian Authority; and the 1996 
creation of Qualified Industrial Zones (QIZ), which are areas under 
joint Israeli and Jordanian control whose exports are eligible for 
duty-free treatment in the United States.
  Once passed by the Congress and the Jordanian Parliament, the U.S.-
Jordan FTA will be the first U.S. free trade agreement with an 
independent Arab country, and Jordan will be the fourth country in the 
world to have a bilateral free trade agreement with America-all of 
which reflects the close bond between the two nations, and reaffirms 
our commitment to this burgeoning relationship.
  Mr. CROWLEY. Mr. Speaker, I rise as a co-sponsor of H.R. 2603, the 
United States-Jordan Free-Trade Agreement.

[[Page H4880]]

  This legislation, as approved, would implement H.Doc. 107-15 as it 
was submitted to Congress on January 6, 2001 by former President 
Clinton, and would make the trade agreement we negotiated with the 
Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan operational.
  Jordan is a moderate Arab nation and an ally of both the United 
States and Israel. The free trade agreement negotiated by the Clinton 
administration will help to solidify trade and commerce between the 
United States and Jordan.
  As you know Mr. Speaker, free trade is vital to political stability 
and economic development not only in the Middle East but also around 
the world. With free trade nations are not only able to exchange goods 
but also ideas. It is the ideas of freedom and democracy that is the 
greatest export the United States can offer to the rest of the world.
  Under the agreement negotiated by the United States and Jordan, both 
nations have committed themselves to removing almost all duties on 
trade in ten years. The two countries have also committed themselves to 
safeguarding intellectual property and copyrights.
  Most importantly the agreement includes provisions to protect worker 
rights and the environment.
  The Middle East is an emerging region and the United States should do 
all it can to help the nations of the Middle East develop their 
economic potential. Jordan has played an integral role in leading the 
region to a freer and a more secure future.
  King Abdullah has made important commitments to implement necessary 
economic and political reforms. Jordan has also been an important 
partner in the Middle East peace process, and a leading voice among 
moderate Arab nations for normalizing relations with the State of 
Israel.
  By supporting free trade with Jordan the United States Congress will 
be recognizing Jordan's role as a peace partner in the Middle East.
  Free trade will give American companies more access not only to the 
Jordanian market but also to markets in Israel and Egypt. While at the 
same time providing for greater economic development in the region.
  Currently, New York State conducts $23 million worth of trade with 
Jordan. In the next ten years this volume is expected to increase as 
Jordan's economy continues to grow. This will create more jobs for my 
constituents and more prosperity for the people of Jordan.
  Mr. Speaker, it is important for the United States to continue 
playing its historic role in the Middle East as a voice for peace and 
democracy. Free trade with Jordan recognizes both Jordan's role as a 
peace partner in the Middle East and it reasserts America's commitment 
to peace and stability in the Middle East. I would also like to point 
out the United States-Jordan Free Trade Agreement is supported by 
Israel, evidence of Israel's continued commitment to peace and 
stability in the region.
  At this hour of crises in the Middle East it is important for the 
United States Congress to stand with the people of Israel and Jordan by 
supporting free trade and democracy in the region.
  Mr. BENTSEN. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of this legislation, 
which provides for implementation of a free trade agreement between the 
United States and Jordan, eliminating duties and commercial barriers to 
bilateral trade in goods and services.
  The U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement was negotiated during the 
Clinton Administration, although it was completed too late to secure 
Congressional action last year. If enacted, Jordan would become only 
the fourth country, after Canada, Mexico and Israel, with which the 
United States has a free-trade arrangement. I support implementation of 
the Jordan FTA because I believe it will help advance the long-term 
U.S. objective of fostering greater Middle East regional economic 
integration, while providing greater market access for U.S. goods, 
services, and investment.
  The Jordan FTA not only sends a strong message to Jordanians and its 
neighbors about the economic benefits of peace, but significantly 
contributes to stability throughout the region. This Agreement is the 
culmination of our economic partnership with Jordan, which has also 
included U.S.-Jordanian cooperation on Jordan's accession to the World 
Trade Organization (WTO), our joint Trade and Investment Framework 
Agreement, and our Bilateral Investment Treaty. This Agreement also 
represents a vote of confidence in Jordan's economic reform program, 
which should serve as a source of growth and opportunity for Jordanians 
in the coming years.
  I am pleased that the Jordan FTA includes the highest possible 
commitments from Jordan on behalf of U.S. business on key issues, 
providing significant liberalization across a wide spectrum of trade 
issues. The FTA builds on economic reforms Jordan has made by requiring 
it to eliminate tariffs on agriculture goods and industrial products 
within a decade, strengthen intellectual property protections and 
liberalize services trade.
  Perhaps most importantly, the Jordan FTA contains provisions in which 
both our countries agree not to relax environmental or labor standards 
in order to enhance competitiveness. For the first time, these 
provisions are in the main body of the agreement. It is important to 
note that the FTA does not require either country to adopt any new laws 
in these areas, but rather includes commitments that each country 
enforce its own labor and environmental laws. While I understand that 
the Bush administration has exchanged letters with Jordan pledging 
neither country would use sanctions to enforce that part of the pact, I 
believe the approach taken under this bill is the right approach--it 
allows this body to move forward on an agreement of strategic 
importance that emphasizes the importance of labor and environmental 
standards to existing and future U.S. trade policy. In light of the 
agreement on this issue, it would serve this body well to work toward a 
similar compromise that can garner broad bipartisan support for Trade 
Promotion Authority, which the House may consider as soon as this week.
  I am pleased that the House moved the Jordan FTA largely as 
negotiated. However, with less than $400 million in two-way trade 
between the U.S. and Jordan--about the same volume of trade the U.S. 
conducts with China in a single day--the real impact of congressional 
approval of this agreement is to show our support for a key U.S. ally 
in a troubled region of the world. Given the relatively small volume of 
trade with Jordan, the strategic significance of the U.S.-Jordanian 
relationship, and the importance Jordanians place on this free trade 
agreement, it is highly unlikely that any Administration, Democrat or 
Republican, present or future, will be forced to impose trade sanctions 
on Jordan. However, since this agreement includes language that neither 
mandates or precludes any means of enforcement, it signifies a critical 
shift in U.S. priorities; one that reflects growing concerns over the 
effect of globalization on U.S. jobs and economic opportunity.
  Mr. Speaker, passage of the Jordan FTA is more significant than the 
trade benefits included in this legislation. Passage of this 
implementing bill sends an important signal of support to our allies 
and our trading partners that the U.S. intends to be an important 
player in promoting trade policies that open markets to U.S. exports 
and create U.S. jobs, while addressing concerns related to the effects 
of increased globalization on our economy. We may never reach consensus 
on the issue of the most appropriate means of enforcing labor and 
environmental violations, but I think that all Members can agree on the 
importance of expanding exports and creating good paying jobs for 
Americans, while providing adequate safeguards to preserve our economic 
interests. With passage of the Jordan FTA, I believe we are taking an 
important first step in achieving these goals, and I urge my colleagues 
to approve this bill.
  Mr. BEREUTER. Mr. Speaker, this Member rises today to express his 
support for H.R. 2603, which implements the United States-Jordan Free 
Trade Area Agreement. This Member would like to thank the distinguished 
gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas), the Chairman of the House Ways 
and Means Committee, for introducing this legislation and for his 
efforts in bringing this measure to the House Floor.
  The U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement, which was signed by President 
Clinton on October 24, 2000, will eliminate commercial barriers and 
duties to bilateral trade in goods and services originating in Jordan 
and the United states. The agreement will eliminate virtually all 
tariffs on trade between Jordan and the U.S. within ten years.
  The U.S.-Jordan Agreement is part of the broader U.S. effort to 
encourage free trade in the Middle East. For example, in 1985, the 
U.S.-Israel Free Trade Agreement was signed and it was extended to 
areas administered by the Palestinian Authority in 1996. In addition, 
the U.S. has also signed Trade and Investment Framework Agreements with 
Egypt in 1999 and Turkey in 2000. It should also be noted Jordan joined 
the World Trade Organization in April of 2000.
  This Member would like to focus on the following three aspects of the 
U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement: the agriculture sector, the services 
sector, and the environmental and labor provisions.
  First, with regard to agriculture, the top U.S. exports to Jordan 
include wheat and corn. In 1999, the U.S. exported $26 million of wheat 
and $10 million of corn to Jordan. With low prices and higher supplies 
of agricultural commodities, this free trade agreement is a step in the 
right direction.
  Second, the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement opens the Jordanian 
service markets to U.S. companies, which includes engineering, 
architecture, financial services, and courier services to name just a 
few. Some U.S. companies should directly benefit from this opening of 
the service markets in Jordan. Services

[[Page H4881]]

trade is becoming a bigger part of the overall trade picture. In fact, 
worldwide services trade totaled $309 billion in 1998, which resulted 
in an $84 billion positive balance for the U.S. in services for 1998. 
This positive trade balance for services is in stark contrast to the 
U.S. merchandise trade deficit.
  As the Chairman of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on 
International Monetary Policy and Trade, this Member has focused on the 
importance of financial services trade. My Subcommittee conducted a 
hearing in June 2001 on financial services trade with insurance, 
securities, and banking witnesses testifying. At this hearing, the 
Subcommittee learned that U.S. trade in financial services equaled 
$20.5 billion. This is a 26.7 percent increase from the U.S.'s 1999 
financial services trade data. Unlike the current overall U.S. trade 
deficit, the U.S. financial services trade had a positive balance of 
$8.8 billion in 2000.
  Third, the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement also includes labor and 
environment provisions. This is the first time that these types of 
provisions have been included in the main text of a U.S. free trade 
agreement. This Member would like to note that these labor and 
environment provisions focus on Jordan and the U.S. enforcing its own 
labor and environmental laws. This agreement does not impose any labor 
and environment standards on Jordan or the U.S.
  Mr. Speaker, in conclusion, this Member urges his colleagues to 
support H.R. 2603, the implementation of the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade 
Agreement.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion offered by the 
gentleman from California (Mr. Thomas) that the House suspend the rules 
and pass the bill, H.R. 2603, as amended.
  The question was taken; and (two-thirds having voted in favor 
thereof) the rules were suspended and the bill, as amended, was passed.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.

                          ____________________



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