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[IWS] CRS: Trade Promotion Authority (TPA): Frequently Asked Questions [21 April 2014]

IWS Documented News Service

_______________________________

Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau

________________________________________________________________________

 

Congressional Research Service (CRS)

 

Trade Promotion Authority (TPA): Frequently Asked Questions

William H. Cooper, Specialist in International Trade and Finance

Ian F. Fergusson, Specialist in International Trade and Finance

Richard S. Beth, Specialist on Congress and the Legislative Process

April 21, 2014

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R43491.pdf

[full-text, 28 pages]

 

Summary

Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), formerly called fast track, is the authority Congress has

granted to the President for limited periods of time to negotiate reciprocal trade agreements. The

authority lays out U.S. trade negotiating objectives, procedures for congressional-executive

notification and consultation, and expedited legislative procedures under which bills

implementing trade agreements negotiated by the executive branch are to be considered. The

most recent authority was enacted in December 2002 and expired as of July 1, 2007. Legislation

to reauthorize TPA has been introduced in the 113th Congress. The United States is engaged in

several sets of trade agreement negotiations. The issue of TPA reauthorization has raised a

number of questions regarding TPA itself and the pending legislation. This report addresses a

number of those questions that are frequently asked, including:

• What is trade promotion authority?

• Is TPA necessary?

• What are trade negotiating objectives and how are they reflected in TPA statutes?

• What requirements does Congress impose on the President under TPA?

• Does TPA affect congressional authority on trade policy?

For more information on TPA, see CRS Report RL33743, Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) and

the Role of Congress in Trade Policy, by William H. Cooper.

 

Contents

Background on Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) .......................................................................... 1

What is Trade Promotion Authority? ......................................................................................... 1

Why has the issue of TPA renewal been raised now? ................................................................ 1

Has legislation been introduced to renew TPA? ........................................................................ 1

What is Congress’s responsibility for trade under the Constitution? ........................................ 2

What authority does Congress grant to the President by enacting TPA legislation? ................. 2

Is TPA necessary? ...................................................................................................................... 2

What requirements have been placed on the President under TPA? .......................................... 3

Is there a deadline for when the President must submit a draft implementing bill to Congress? ............................................................................................................................... 3

Along with the draft implementing bill, what other documents must the President submit to Congress for approval? ........................................................................................... 3

When was TPA/fast track first used? ......................................................................................... 4

How many times has TPA/fast track been used? ....................................................................... 4

How has the lack of TPA affected current trade agreement negotiations? ................................ 4

Do other countries have a TPA-type legislative mechanism? ................................................... 4

Will TPA legislation be considered like other bills or be subject to expedited

procedures? ............................................................................................................................. 5

Trade Negotiating Objectives .......................................................................................................... 5

What are negotiating objectives? ............................................................................................... 5

Goods, Services, and Agriculture .............................................................................................. 5

What are some of the negotiating objectives for market access for goods? ........................ 5

Have U.S. negotiating objectives evolved on services trade? ............................................. 6

How do the negotiating objectives for agriculture differ from those laid out in the

2002 TPA Act? ................................................................................................................. 6

Foreign Investment .................................................................................................................... 7

How does TPA seek to protect U.S. investor rights with our trading partners? .................. 7

To what extent does TPA address investor-state dispute settlement? .................................. 7

How have these provisions evolved over time? .................................................................. 7

Will foreign investors be afforded “greater rights” than U.S. investors under U.S. trade agreements? ............................................................................................................. 8

Trade Remedies ......................................................................................................................... 8

How does TPA address trade remedies? .............................................................................. 8

Currency Issues ......................................................................................................................... 8

Have currency practices ever been addressed in a TPA authorization? ............................... 8

How would currency issues be addressed under pending TPA renewal legislation? .......... 9

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) ............................................................................................. 9

What are the key negotiating objectives concerning IPR? .................................................. 9

Does the proposed BCTPA contain new IPR negotiating objectives? ................................ 9

What is the May 10th Agreement? .................................................................................... 10

Have the May 10th Agreement provisions been incorporated into the proposed

BCTPA? ......................................................................................................................... 10

Labor and Environment ........................................................................................................... 11

What are the negotiating objectives on labor under the 2002 TPA and how do they compare with the objectives on labor proposed under the proposed BCTPA? .............. 11

What are the environmental negotiating objectives under the proposed BCTPA, and how do they compare with the objectives on environment under the 2002  authority? .................... 12

Would the labor and environmental provisions negotiated be subject to the same dispute settlement provisions as other parts of the agreement? ..................................... 12

Regulatory Practices ................................................................................................................ 12

How does the proposed BCTPA seek to address regulatory practices?............................. 12

Does the proposed BCTPA address drug pricing and reimbursement issues? .................. 13

Dispute Settlement (DS) .................................................................................................... 13

What are the principal negotiating objectives on DS in FTAs? ........................................ 13

How does TPA address DS at the WTO? .......................................................................... 13

New Issues Addressed in the proposed BCTPA ...................................................................... 13

What new negotiating objectives are contained in the proposed BCTPA? ....................... 13

Congressional Consultation and Advisory Requirements .............................................................. 14

How do the provisions on consultations in proposed TPA renewal legislation compare

with previous statutes? ......................................................................................................... 15

Who would be Members of the House and Senate Advisory Groups? .................................... 15

Who are Designated Congressional Advisors? ........................................................................ 15

Which Members of Congress have access to draft trade agreements and related trade

negotiating documents? ........................................................................................................ 16

What are the requirements to consult with the private sector and the public on trade policy? .................................................................................................................................. 16

Do specific import sensitive industries have special negotiation and consultation requirements? ....................................................................................................................... 17

Notification and Reporting Requirements ..................................................................................... 17

What have been the congressional notification requirements and would they change under the pending legislation? .............................................................................................. 17

What is the role of the U.S. International Trade Commission? ............................................... 18

Expedited Procedures and the Congressional Role ....................................................................... 18

What have been the expedited legislative procedures? Would they be changed under the proposed BCTPA? .......................................................................................................... 18

What is the purpose of the expedited procedures for considering implementing bills? .......... 19

Why do the expedited procedures for implementing bills prohibit amendments? .................. 19

What can/should be included in a trade agreement implementing bill that receives

expedited legislative consideration? ..................................................................................... 19

How would the proposed BCTPA treat agreements reached under the sets of negotiations already launched?............................................................................................. 20

May Congress withdraw TPA procedures? .............................................................................. 20

What is a “mock markup”? ...................................................................................................... 20

Can Congress disapprove the President’s launching trade negotiations with a trading

partner? ................................................................................................................................. 21

May Congress override the TPA procedures? .......................................................................... 21

Does TPA constrain Congress’s exercise of its constitutional authority on trade

policy? .................................................................................................................................. 22

National Sovereignty and Trade Agreements ................................................................................ 22

Can a trade agreement force the United States to change its laws? ......................................... 22

What happens if a U.S. law violates a U.S. trade agreement? ................................................. 23

Contacts

Author Contact Information........................................................................................................... 23

 

 

________________________________________________________________________

This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

 

 




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