The US-Israel Free Trade Agreement
AMERICAN ISRAEL PUBLIC
444 NORTH CAPITOL STREET, NW. • SUITE 412 • WASHINGTON. D.C 20001 •
June 30, 1984
TO: Officers, Executive Committee, National Council and Key Contacts
FR: Thomas A. Dine, Executive Director
Douglas M. Bloomfield, Legislative Director
June was a productive month. Just before Congress Left for its three
week July recess (for the Democratic
convention), the Senate Appropriations Committee approved the nost
favorable terms and levels of U.S. assistance ever for Israe, $2.6
billion in grant assistance for FY 198S. Other highlights of the
* The completion of House hearings on Legislation--with 227 house and 51
Senate sponsors —— to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem;
* The holding of hearings on a proposal to fund joint U.S—Israel
development projects in the Third world;
* Continued protests of the Administration’s emergency sale of 400
stinger missiles to Saudi Arabia. The Administration notified Congress
only after the delivery was underway.
* The holding of hearings by a House subcommittee on a bill authorizing
negotiations for a U.S.—Israel free trade area.
The Senate ApprQpriations Committee approved $2.6 billion in grant FY
1985 aid to Israel June 26. In approving the aid levels and numerous
pro—Israel provisions of the bill without dissent, the full, committee
endorsed the leadership
of the Foreign operations subcommittee, Chairman Sen. Bob Kasten R—WI)
and ranking minority member Daniel K. Inouye (D—HI). These two leading
supporters of Israel sponsored several pro—Israel amendments to the
* All grant military aid (EMS) of $1.4 billion.
* The increase in Economic Support Funds (ES?) from $850 million, which
the Administration had requested, to $1.2
billion, all grants.
* Earmarking $400 million in ENIS for continued research, development
and procurement for Israel’s Lavi attack aircraft—— $150 million to be
spent in the United States and $250 million in Israel.
* Adoption of a policy establishing Israel’s annual debt service
to the United States as the minimum level of economic assistance to
* Disbursal of all ESE funds in the first quarter of FY 1985, rather
than in quarterly installments throughout the year.
* Authority for Israeli firms to bid on Agency for International
Development—funded construction and engineering projects in the Third
* Permission for Israel to draw down grant aid appropriated by Congress
before loans, thereby saving interest costs.
The Senate has yet to act on its F! 1985 authorization bill, which
contains provisions similar to the Appropriations bill. It remains
possible that the Senate will consider the bilk in late July or early
August, between convention recesses. Controversial provisions on Central
America and Turkey_Greece—Cyprus have delayed Floor consideration of the
The House Appropriations subcommittee and full committee are expected to
mark—up in September.
FREE TRADE AREA
Despite intense lobbying by some agricultural interests—— particularly
so—called specialty crops, like dehydrated onion and garlic —— over 100
representatives have sponsored HR 5377, a bill authorizing the President
to negotiate and implement a Free Trade Area (FTA) agreement with
June 14, the ways and Means Trade Subcommittee completed its set of the
hearings on the bill. Representatives William Thomas (R—CA) Norman
Shumway KR—CA) Barbara Vucanovich (H—NV) and Frederick Pashayan (R—CA)
all testified at the hearing for specific product exclusions in any tree
trade legislation. Arkansas bromine industry, in concert with the states
congressional delegation. strongly opposed the inclusion of bromine in
Subcommittee chairman Rep. Sam Gibbons (D—FL) , one of the chief
sponsors of the bill, pledged to mark—up HR 5377 after the Congress
returns from its July recess. In the meantime, the panel. held a closed
informal hearing on the legislation June 26.
The senate bill finally got a number this month —— S.2746 —— and its
first sponsor, Sen. Chic Kecht R—NV) . The bill was introduced by
Finance Committee chairman, Sen. Robert Dale (R—KS)
DURING THE CONGRESSIONAL~ RECESS
(JUNE 29—JULY 23), PLEASE CONTACT
YOUR REPRESENTATIVE AND SENATORS
AT THEIR DISTRICT OFFICES AND URGE
THEM TO SPONSOR HR 5377 OR S 2746.
complete list of the House sponsors of ETA legislation is attached at
the end of the UPDATE.]
Two House Foreign Affairs subcommittees concluded their extended series
of public hearings on the proposed
legislation calling for the relocation of the U.S. Embassy in Israel to
Jerusalem. Congressional supporters of the move grew increasingly
frustrated with hardening Administration opposition. International
operations subcommittee chairman Rep. Daniel A. Mica (D—FL) dismayed,
charged that the Administration had rejected all congressional efforts
to reach a compromise. Administration witnesses —— Assistant Secretary
of State Richard Murphy and Undersecretary of State Michael Armacost ——
objected to this view. But they main tamed their strenuous opposition to
the legislation and the Embassy move.
A majority of bath the House and Senate now sponsor the companion
legislation —— there are 227 House sponsors and 51 in the Senate.