July 25, 2000
H.R. 4868 - Miscellaneous Trade and Technical Corrections Act
The Administration has no objection to House passage of H.R. 4868, but will
oppose final action on the bill unless it is amended in the Senate to
delete the provision on Sudanese gum arabic. That provision would exempt
U.S. imports of Sudanese gum arabic from the prohibitions of the
President's Executive Order (E.O. 13067), which imposes a trade embargo
against Sudan and a total asset freeze against the Government of Sudan.
(Crane (R) Illinois)
The gum arabic provision would infringe on the President's flexibility to
conduct foreign policy and would weaken U.S. sanctions imposed on Sudan in
1997 because of its support for terrorist activities and human rights
violations. The sanctions should be lifted only when there is a
demonstrable improvement in Sudanese policies, which has not occurred to
A blanket removal of the import prohibition for a specific Sudanese
product, regardless of the continued behavior of the Sudanese regime, is
inappropriate and limits the President's ability to make moderate
adjustments in the sanctions as circumstances change.
The Administration is prepared to address the need for further limited
sanctions relief for gum arabic processors, as has been provided over the
past two years. However, we believe that permanently lifting the sanctions
on gum arabic at this time would be an unwarranted benefit to Sudan,
notwithstanding the limited benefit derived by the Sudanese government, and
could undermine the efficacy of the sanctions regime.
H.R. 4868 would affect revenue; therefore, it is subject to the
pay-as-you-go requirement of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA)
of 1990. OMB's preliminary scoring estimate is under development.