July 18, 2000
H.J.Res. 103 - Disapproving the Extension of Nondiscriminatory Trade Treatment to China
The Administration strongly opposes H.J.Res. 103, which would disapprove
normal trade relations (NTR) with China, and if it were presented to the
President he would veto it. The House acted on May 24, 2000, to grant
Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) to China. Granting annual NTR is
required to maintain our present trading relations. The PNTR package
passed by the House and nearing action in the Senate will extend PNTR to
China only after China's formal accession to the World Trade Organization.
(Rohrabacher (R) CA and 3 cosponsors)
For the same reason that the President strongly supports extending PNTR to
China, he strongly opposes this resolution, which if passed, would disrupt
the relationship between the United States and China.
The Administration urges support for the renewal of NTR to China because it
advances a broad range of critical U.S. interests, such as advancing
America's economic interests, preventing the spread of weapons of mass
destruction, combating international crime and drug trafficking, promoting
economic and regional stability in Asia, and protecting the global
environment. Maintaining our overall relationship with China will enable
the United States to actively engage China in the months and years ahead,
to enhance areas of cooperation, and to pursue American interests where we
differ. That engagement can help determine whether China becomes an
increasingly open and productive partner for America, or whether it becomes
more isolated and unpredictable. Extending NTR status to China is vital to
our ability to successfully engage China and advance U.S. interests.
Revoking annual NTR would significantly damage America's relationship with
a fifth of the world's population and jeopardize U.S. political and
economic security for no discernible gain, given the impending extension of
PNTR. It would reverse three decades of bipartisan China policy and would
seriously weaken our influence not only in China, but throughout Asia and
beyond. Renewal of NTR at this time, and ultimately the granting of PNTR,
best advances the substantial and broad range of U.S. interests.