US Department of State 

Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990


Democratic Change in Africa

Cohen Source: Herman J. Cohen, Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Description: Address to the African American Institute, Washington, DC Date: Nov 8, 199011/8/90 Category: Speeches, Testimony, Statements Region: Subsaharan Africa Subject: Democratization [TEXT] I am pleased that the African-American Institute has offered me the opportunity to discuss "Democratic Change in Africa." This is, indeed, a time of positive change in Africa, and not only in the realm of politics. Africa is changing its economic orientation and its approach to international relations. All of these changes are mutually reinforcing and all are supported by the US government, as well as by Africa's many friends among the American people. Democracy and market economics have made huge gains throughout the world in the past few years, and their triumph has helped to create a new climate in international relations, a climate of cooperation and deepening commitment to collective security. Economically, Africa began to move toward free-market policies even before the peaceful revolution in Eastern Europe. Positive political change had a headstart in Eastern Europe and Latin America, but now Africa, too, has responded to the global rebirth of hope for freedom. Some African countries began to abandon the outworn statist economic model as early as 1985. Now, almost 30 African countries have embarked on an economic transformation by implementing structural reforms designed to place them on the path to sustained economic growth. Throughout the continent, nations are beginning to foresee the benefits of decentralizing their economies. As Secretary Baker noted in his remarks to OAU [Organization of African Unity] heads of delegation at this year's UNGA [UN General Assembly], US support for Africa's economic transformation has been continuous and substantial. For example, several years ago we placed our development assistance on a grant basis. And we already have forgiven more than $800 million in old economic assistance debt owed by African countries implementing economic reform programs. But we believe that sustained, self-generated economic growth can take place only in a political environment that allows people to have confidence in their government and their future. Africans, too, have come to realize that development and democracy go hand-in-hand, and that is one of primary reasons for the wave of democratic reform that is sweeping the continent today. As the 1990 OAU summit communique pointed out, Africa's economic transformation depends on the "participation of our peoples in the process of government. We accordingly recommit ourselves to the further democratization of our societies and the consolidation of democratic institutions in our countries." Of course, the linkage between democracy and development is not the only reason that African countries are rejecting authoritarianism and turning to pluralism.
Africans Have Early Start on Democracy
Democracy had a foothold in Africa even before the recent stunning events in Eastern Europe. Botswana, The Gambia, Mauritius, and Senegal are longstanding examples of African pluralism. Their success and the success of Namibia's multi-party elections, as well as the collapse of the authoritarian one-party model throughout Latin America, the Pacific Rim, Eastern Europe, and the Soviet Union itself, have inspired other African countries to take another look at their political systems. In some countries, wise leaders realized that the authoritarian model was bankrupt, that it acted to inhibit rather than promote economic growth, to exacerbate rather than diminish ethnic tensions. These leaders chose to become architects, rather than victims, of change. But in most cases, the impetus for change came from below. It came from the workers and the unions, the clergy and the churches, the students and the universities. In short, it came from the people of Africa. Like people everywhere, Africans want and need freedom. And they want what the one-party model has so singularly failed to provide: government based on the equality of all groups rather than dominance by or favoritism toward one; leaders interested in national development rather than the limited perspectives of patronage politics; economic policies that promote rather than preclude individual enterprise. It is, of course, too early to predict whether Africa's movement toward political pluralism will continue, or even whether the gains made so far can be sustained. But I believe that there is cause for optimism because the impetus for change has come from the people. And now that change has begun, the people are likely to keep the pressure on.
Pace of Change Is Rapid
The pace of democratic change in Africa over the past year and a half has been remarkable. And it continues to accelerate. Independent Namibia was born as a democracy. Gabon already has held multi-party legislative elections. Nigeria, Africa's most populous state, continues to move toward the restoration of civilian democratic rule, with national elections scheduled for 1992. Benin, Mozambique, and Angola have renounced Marxism-Leninism in favor of multi-party democracy. Many other African states, including Cape Verde, Cote d'Ivoire, Guinea, Lesotho, and Zambia are undertaking or actively considering democratic reforms. The list goes on, and it gets longer almost by the day. The debate within Africa on the correct path of democracy often emphasizes the issue of tribalism. Opponents of multi-party structures say that ethnicity in Africa is so strong that multi-party systems inevitably degenerate into tribal hatred. I believe that the United States, with its long experience with ethnic politics, can teach Africans something about this significant phenomenon. It is my personal feeling that strong ethnic identity should be recognized in politics rather than suppressed. Single-party structures often slide into mono-ethnic power monopolies. Pluralistic structures, by their very nature, require ethnic balance, coalitions, and compromise. As someone who votes in the state of New York, I feel I have first-hand knowledge of the role of ethnic politics in democracy. I do not need to tell this audience that the United States is heartened by the democratic trend in Africa, that we are as pleased by the steps African countries are taking to discard outworn ideologies for free markets and democratic reforms as we are by democratic triumphs elsewhere in the world. But some Africans, and some Americans as well, have expressed concern that events in Eastern Europe are shifting US attention away from Africa. This is simply not the case. As President Bush remarked at the IMF [International Monetary Fund]-World Bank meeting in Washington this September, the United States is strongly committed to promoting development and growth in the newly emerging democracies of Africa," as well as those of Latin America, Europe, and Asia. And as Secretary Baker told the OAU delegations in New York, "Africa remains very important to us. We want to develop further the partnership between Africa and the US, a partnership based on mutual responsibility and mutual respect. Above all, we want to encourage the continent-wide movement toward economic liberty and political freedom." We want to do this because we believe in democracy ourselves and because we consider democracy necessary for Africa's development. But we have also noted that as Africa moves toward economic liberty and political freedom, African countries are tending to take a new approach to international relations. African states are increasingly abandoning foreign policies based on sterile non-aligned rhetoric and committing themselves to global cooperation and collective security, as exemplified by their response to Iraqi aggression. As Secretary Baker has stated, the United States is "heartened by Africa's devotion to collective security and the principles of the UN Charter. The African members of the Security Council took a leading role in organizing the world's response to Iraqi aggression. And African countries have, almost without exception, given their full support to the UN sanctions which will bring the Iraqi aggressor to heel." I do not think we can yet be certain that the trend toward political pluralism, market economics and a more cooperative approach in international relations will prevail. But Africa's reformers already have compiled a proud record of achievement, and we in the US government are doing what we can to support them and ensure that their achievements endure.
Africa's Responsibility
Of course, the primary responsibility for Africa's political future rests in the hands of Africans themselves. Nor do we wish to impose our particular form of government on others. Each nation in Africa has its own conditions, its own requirements for change, its own range of options. But democracy is a system of great adaptability, and it is our policy to encourage democratization throughout the continent. We are doing this by making our support for political and economic pluralism clear at the highest levels of every African government, most particularly in those capitals where our message might not be welcome. And our aid program also is bolstering the cause of free markets and democracy. As USAID [US Agency for International Development] Administrator Ronald Roskens noted in his September "statement of mission," USAID's objective is to assist nations throughout the world to reduce poverty, ignorance, and malnutrition and to assist developing nations to "realize their full national potential through the development of open and democratic societies and the dynamism of free markets and individual initiative." To meet these objectives, USAID's programs will be guided by the principles of "support for free markets and broad-based economic growth and "support for democracy." The United States is providing assistance to strengthen these institutions and values on which democracy rests: accountability and transparency in government, a free press, an independent judiciary, the rule of law--institutions and values that are essential if African countries are to attract the outside investment necessary for sustained economic growth. We also are providing newly democratizing African states with expertise and some financial assistance to help smooth the difficult transition process. Our own budgetary constraints put limits on what we can do, but we are exploring the possibility of obtaining new types of funding to help those countries that are pursuing the mutually reinforcing goals of political liberalization and market-oriented economic reform. We also recognize that there is a limit to what outside assistance can accomplish; the efforts of Africans themselves will be by far the most important factor in achieving democracy and making it work. In this era of limited resources, we intend to pay special attention to Africa's democracies and to countries that are actively engaged in the democratization process. As we have told our African interlocutors on more than one occasion, those countries that fail to respond--or worse, suppress--popular demands for democratization will find themselves in an ever more disadvantageous position in the competition for assistance and private investment. Africa's transition from authoritarianism to democracy will not be easy. But I believe that democracy will triumph in Africa because the African people have so clearly demonstrated that they want freedom. And I am confident that the day will come when truly representative government will prevail throughout the continent. (###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

The Gulf Crisis

Baker Source: Secretary Baker Description: Excerpts from news conference in Paris, France Date: Nov 10, 199011/10/90 Category: Speeches, Testimony, Statements Region: MidEast/North Africa Country: Iraq, Kuwait Subject: Military Affairs, Democratization, International Law [TEXT] Let me say that I felt before this trip began that we were entering a new phase in the gulf crisis. Initially, we had focused on deterring further Iraqi aggression and developing a strong international consensus determined to reverse Iraq's annexation of Kuwait. Having put together the coalition, we then had to be able to sustain it. So we focused on responsibility-sharing to make that possible and to ease the burden of those hardest hit by the implementation of sanctions. So, we have built a consensus, we have increased the pressure on Saddam Hussein, isolated him, but we have not yet succeeded in reversing his aggression. In this phase, we've recognized that we must heighten the pressure further. Indeed, we have to lay the foundation for the use of force should that become necessary. One way to do that is, clearly, to get ready militarily. Augmenting our forces, sorting out the command and control arrangements, satisfying the logistics support needs of the multinational forces so they can be effective, were all issues that I touched upon or discussed with the political leadership of the countries which I have visited. I also discussed and compared views on how we lay the foundation for a possible use of force politically: meaning that we continue to consult together about when sanctions have been given a sufficient period of time to work. And meaning also that we consider how to proceed under the UN Charter while maintaining consensus and maintaining support for our actions. We want to achieve our objective and reverse Iraq's aggression peacefully and politically if we can possibly do so. That is our clear preference, that is very much our strong preference. But we will not let Saddam Hussein's aggression stand, and that requires putting ourselves in a position to use force if that should become necessary. So as we wrap up this trip, I feel we have a very strong consensus on our collective aims and on the need particularly to resist partial solutions, on the need to work together and to stay together in this coalition, and on the need to make all of our options credible if we are to succeed. And we are all convinced that we must succeed. Our principles demand that. A new peaceful international order demands that. And the jobs and economic well-being of our people require it. . . . Q: Mr. Secretary, what about the question of linkage? At the end of your trip do you feel that you have now completely put to bed the issue of linking a diplomatic resolution of the gulf crisis to any other issue in the Middle East? I'm particularly thinking of your conversations in the Soviet Union and your conversations here. Is the coalition united in the position that there should be and will be not linkage? A: I think the coalition is completely united on the principle of no partial solutions. They are completely united on the idea that in no way should Saddam Hussein be rewarded or be seen to be being rewarded for his aggression. And I think there is almost, if not complete, unanimity of opinion on the view that there should be no linkage between the situation in the gulf and other issues affecting the Middle East or that part of the world. Practically every one of the--I won't speak for each and every one of the 50-odd nations that might be seen to be making up a part of the coalition through the contribution here of economic or political support--but I think, substantially, there is a degree of unanimity here that there should be no linkage. We all agree with that. . . .
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

The CSCE Summit

Baker Source: Secretary Baker Description: Excerpts from news conference in Washington, DC Date: Nov 14, 199011/14/90 Category: Speeches, Testimony, Statements Region: Europe Country: Iraq, Kuwait Subject: Military Affairs, CSCE [TEXT] The President will be participating in a summit in Paris scheduled for November 19-21. He and his counterparts from Europe, the Soviet Union, and Canada will be meeting to inaugurate a new era in European relations. In Paris, the President will sign three documents of far-reaching significance for the future of Europe that will help to consolidate the security and human rights gains of the past dramatic year. First, the President and other NATO leaders, and the leaders of the Warsaw Pact member states, will sign a treaty on conventional [armed] forces in Europe (CFE): the first post-war conventional arms control treaty. The United States, of course, made completion of a conventional forces agreement a condition of our participation in this summit in Paris because we view it as the essential foundation on which greater European cooperation is going to have to rest. Implementation of the treaty will accelerate the construction of a more stable and legitimate political and military order in Europe. Second, the President will sign a non-aggression declaration between the members of the NATO alliance and the Warsaw Pact which will, in a sense, bury the Cold War hatchet. The declaration fulfills an important initiative of last summer's NATO summit and demonstrates the alliance's adaptability to change. Third, the President and the other leaders of the Helsinki signatory states will adopt a summit document on the future of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe--CSCE. Paris marks the second summit-level meeting in CSCE history, and it really is a major milestone for the Helsinki process. The document will strengthen this process in ways that reinforce the work of NATO and the work of the European community. The gathering in Paris will embody in microcosm the new Europe that is still in the process of evolving its various actors, its institutions, and it concerns. It will be a trans-Atlantic constellation of leaders representing the established democracies, a united Germany, the newly emerging democracies of Central and Eastern Europe, and, of course, a reforming Soviet Union. For the first time in 40 years, Europe will be meeting and discussing and planning without an artificial East-West divide to block progress. For the first time in the history of the Helsinki process, all CSCE states will proceed from an agreed basis of democratic and market principles. During the last decades of the Cold War, CSCE has been a major vehicle for facilitating the flow of peoples, ideas, and information between East and West. In this post-Cold War period, CSCE represents the common high ground where the nations of Europe, Canada, and the United States can meet to foster human rights, military security, economic, and environmental and scientific cooperation. Based on proposals put forward by NATO at the London summit early this summer, the Paris document will institute high-level political consultations of the CSCE member states, commit the signatories to review conferences--comprehensive review conferences--every 2 years, give CSCE its first permanent secretariat which will be located in Prague and which will facilitate the high-level political exchanges. It will establish a conflict prevention center--at least initially based in Vienna--to promote military predictability, transparency, and confidence, and to facilitate the conciliation of disputes. And finally, it will create an office for free elections to facilitate election observation and the general process of democratic institution-building. As we strengthen this organization politically and institutionally in all these ways, we rededicate the Helsinki process to advancing fundamental freedoms. In the years when prospects for a whole and free Europe were very dim, indeed, CSCE served as a beacon of hope for the peoples beyond the Berlin Wall. In these eventful times, CSCE opens promising new doors to a future of democracy and cooperation. So we are certain that the political and institutional strengthening of this organization at Paris will speed the day when all of Europe's peoples realize their long-cherished dreams for human rights, political freedom, prosperity, and peace.(###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

State Department Gulf Crisis Information

Date: Nov 19, 199011/19/90 Category: Fact Sheets Region: MidEast/North Africa Country: Iraq, Kuwait Subject: State Department [TEXT]
: 202-647-0900 (24 hours)
Questions or comments
about the administration's gulf policy: 202-647-6575 or 6576, Monday-Friday, 8:30 am-5 pm (Eastern Standard Time)(###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

Feature: Kuwait Task Force Helps Keep Americans in Touch

Date: Nov 19, 199011/19/90 Category: Features Region: MidEast/North Africa Country: Iraq, Kuwait Subject: State Department [TEXT] Iraq's invasion of Kuwait on August 2 trapped about 3,000 Americans in both countries and prompted a deluge of calls and letters to the Department of State from people requesting information and expressing concern about their friends and relatives. The Department established the Kuwait Task Force, staffed around the clock, 7 days a week, by employees from the Bureau of Consular Affairs and other bureaus in the Department. Up to 40 people work on any one of three 8-hour shifts. Task forces are created to handle many international crises, such as recent emergencies in Liberia, Romania, and Panama. The Kuwait Task Force includes representatives of various policy, military, and other Department elements affected by the crisis. The Bureau for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (NEA) is the point of contact between the embassies in Iraq and Kuwait and the Department. "NEA is the focal point for the US government policy on the crisis," says David Good, public affairs adviser for the bureau. "It serves as the liaison with other agencies, such as the Department of Defense, which are involved in the area." The task force also contains a special Consular Affairs subgroup that deals with families and friends of those Americans trying to get out of Kuwait and Iraq. Consular Affairs task force members answer calls, gather and record information they receive about Americans in the two countries, advise friends and relatives in the United States, and, in general, try to keep the lines of communication open. Those lines have been busy. The day of the invasion, the Department received more than 4,600 telephone calls from relatives and friends of Americans in Iraq or Kuwait. In the first few days following Iraq's attack, calls to the Department averaged as many as 600 an hour. Task force members, in turn, have made more than 30,000 calls to families and friends. Consular Affairs task force members are working with the Department's new, computer-based Crisis Information System (CRIS), which maintains a record of Americans in Kuwait and Iraq and can quickly refer to a specific individual or family when answering a call. "The Crisis Management Information System is part of a Department effort to respond to any crisis anywhere with the greatest speed, compassion, and professionalism possible, no matter what the situation," says Elizabeth M. Tamposi, Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs. The system allows users access to information that is timely, accurate, and easily retrievable, she explains. "CRIS records the name and vital data of the American citizen, indicates names of family, corporate, or congressional contacts in the United States, creates a chronology of caller inquiries, and generates information to create 'welfare and whereabouts' cables for transmission to the embassy in Kuwait or Iraq." The latter refers to cables from the Department to an embassy requesting that it report any information that it has on an individual. Task force members keep in touch with people who have made an inquiry even if they have no new information to offer, Assistant Secretary Tamposi notes. "We do this for two reasons: to reassure people that we are concerned about their cases, and to find out if the people calling have had any contact with their overseas relative or friend and, if so, whether they have gathered any information." The best calls, she adds, "are the ones we make to friends or family in the United States when we have good news--that a friend or a family member is on an evacuation flight." The task force also is organized so that each of the hundreds of families affected by the crisis in the Persian Gulf will have a single point of contact in the Department. These "case officers" are the family's primary link with the Department and keep in touch with the family by calling at least once every 48 hours or, in the case of victims with medical conditions or known to actually be in Iraqi custody, once every 24 hours. In addition, the Department has continued twice-a-week mail delivery to the embassy in Baghdad, sending more than 400 letters from family members to American hostages and receiving almost 300 in return. The embassy must rely on the Iraqi Foreign Ministry to distribute letters to the hostages. President Bush has said that the safety of Americans in the two countries is the US government's highest priority. The embassies in Iraq and Kuwait are devoting almost all their resources to that end, says John Hotchner, a Consular Affairs official who represents the bureau on the NEA task force. As other Western missions in Iraq and Kuwait are closed, the burden grows even greater on the US embassies, he adds. Communication sometimes is difficult because of restraints the Iraqis have imposed on the movement of embassy personnel, Hotchner notes. Nonetheless, embassy officers in Baghdad and Kuwait before the embassy was surrounded by soldiers risked their lives to visit hotels where American citizens have been detained, in many cases defying Iraqi soldiers, he adds. "Even though the embassy personnel in Kuwait have been confined to their compound, they continue to provide assistance for Americans in the area, including arrangements for evacuation flights," he says. "They have made every effort to ensure that our citizens were well cared for and their needs met as far as possible." The Iraqis also have monitored calls between Americans hiding in Kuwait and the embassy in an attempt to find Americans. "As a result, our telephone conversations with the Americans in Kuwait are short," Hotchner notes. "Our citizens usually have time only to advise us they are well and, in some cases, that they moved their location. But, of course, they cannot say where they have moved for fear of discovery." Hotchner and all other Consular Affairs officers are trained to respond when a crisis erupts. The bureau has developed a comprehensive Crisis Management Training Course, which is part of the course work for every officer who comes to the bureau. Consular Affairs also has worked with the Foreign Service Institute to ensure that officers in all bureaus are exposed to crisis management training and that they learn how to help people affected by tragedies. In the case of the Kuwait Task Force, the bureau employs specially trained officers to handle contact with families known to be in Iraqi custody or to persons with medical conditions. Alberta Espie, a Consular Affairs staff member who volunteered for the task force, says she is glad to lend a helping hand. "I enjoy talking to people, and I really feel like I'm helping them," she says. "Some people use the call to vent their frustration over the situation in the Persian Gulf, but virtually everyone is grateful for whatever information we can provide. I think it's been a rewarding experience." -- Jim Pinkelman, Dispatch Staff(###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

US-EC Relations

Bush Source: President Bush Description: Statements at the departure of Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, Washington, DC Date: Nov 13, 199011/13/90 Category: Speeches, Testimony, Statements Region: Europe Country: Italy Subject: EC, Trade/Economics [TEXT] Statements by President Bush and Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, President of the European Community (EC) Council and Prime Minister of Italy, upon the latter's departure, Washington, DC, November 13, 1990 I was delighted to have the opportunity for these extended discussions with my friend, Giulio Andreotti. This is my first official meeting with the leader of the European Community (EC) in his capacity as President of [the] EC Council. And as such, it fulfills an agreement that I made with Prime Minister [Charles J.] Haughey during the Irish EC presidency. I look forward to regular working sessions with future EC presidency representatives and consider this the beginning of a valuable new tradition. I, of course, also wanted to extend a warm welcome to the EC Commission President, an old friend, Jacques Delors, and of course, the Foreign Minister of Italy, Foreign Minister De Michelis, who have made valuable contributions in these discussions that we had there in the Cabinet Room. We discussed at length our goals for the Uruguay Round and our strong conviction that we must succeed in substantial trade liberalization and strengthening the multilateral world trading system. And I, for my part, and Prime Minister Andreotti and President Delors on behalf of the Community and its member states, have pledged to make every effort to ensure that the Round concludes successfully in the coming weeks. Indeed, there will be follow-on meetings tomorrow with President Delors. We also continued our discussions on the crisis in the gulf. We've worked closely with our EC colleagues on all aspects of the gulf situation since the invasion of Kuwait. And we've cooperated to pass and maintain effective UN Security Council sanctions. Our continuing consultations are providing vital assistance to the front-line states. And I want to salute Prime Minister Andreotti for his strong leadership and for the Community's firm resolve in the international effort in the gulf. Through our consultations today and in the future, we are strengthening the transatlantic partnership--a partnership which will continue to unite the United States and Europe in advancing our shared values of political and economic freedom. Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for coming, sir, and have a safe trip home.
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

US-EC Relations

Giulion Source: Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, President of the European Community (EC) and Prime Minister of Italy Description: Statements at the departure of Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, Washington, DC Date: Nov 13, 199011/13/90 Category: Speeches, Testimony, Statements Region: Europe Country: Italy Subject: EC, Trade/Economics [TEXT] I thank you, Mr. President, for the welcome you gave to me and to President Delors and [Foreign] Minister De Michelis. The close relationship between the United States of America and the European Community constitutes a point and has constituted a point of great strength for the maintenance of stability and peace in the world. What occurred in Kuwait is rightly deemed to be untolerable. If it [Iraq] were allowed to occupy and to annex a country without any opposition, then this would mean the end of the juridical order system which exists in the world. The effort being carried out by the United Nations with the contribution of all of us is aimed at obtaining three results: First, the liberation of Kuwait and the return of the legality in the country; Second, the freeing of the hostages; and Third, the establishment of a system of security in all the countries in the Middle East capable of assuring a reciprocal peace in that area and a reciprocal respect amongst their peoples. As President Bush has said in his speech in front of the United Nations on the first of October, there can be no simultaneity to solve all the problems in the area, but there exists a connection among them and a strong commitment to bring back peace and security in the Middle East. All our efforts must be aimed at achieving these goals in a peaceful way. Lastly, I want to say that we have worked out the wording of the declaration of the relationship between the EC and the United States of America. I know that there has been only one word, in brackets, and I hope this will be very soon solved, so that in Paris next week we can have the issuance of this declaration. And lastly, as President Bush has said, during the meeting we have devoted a great part of it to discuss at length the problems connected with the Uruguay Round, and with great clarity and also with the will to reach a positive conclusion. We believe truly that should this agreement not be achieved, then it would bring about serious damages, in particular, to the less developed countries. I will have the pleasure of meeting next week in Paris [with] President Bush, and I would just [like] to emphasize how important it is this formula of cooperation for security in Europe. Also, before 1975 [signature of the Helsinki Final Act], relations between Europe and the American continent were very good. But as of 1975, the United States of America and Canada are Europe. It is not a fantasy to say that it was in that very moment that the new history for the United States, for Canada, and for Europe and for the whole world had started. We must have this policy or cooperation and security guide always our steps in the future in our decisions. Thank you, President Bush, also for having me--for this welcome and having bid me a good return, because now I will not suffer today of jet lag since I'm leaving tonight.(###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

GATT and the Uruguay Round

Date: Nov 19, 199011/19/90 Category: Policy Briefs (Gist) Subject: International Organizations, Trade/Economics, International Law [TEXT]
The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) entered into force in 1948 as one in a series of post-war agreements to improve world political and economic stability. It sets rules for international trade and provides a forum for multilateral tariff and other trade negotiations. The United States is among the founding members and a chief author of the GATT. It now has 99 members, known as contracting parties, which account for almost 90% of world trade. (1) Since the inception of the GATT, international trade has increased in volume at least tenfold. This growth has occurred partly as a result of a consensus among GATT members that the world's economic welfare depends on freer trade, without the risk of escalating tariff wars. Seven rounds of multilateral negotiations under the GATT have succeeded in reducing average tariffs in the industrial countries from more than 40% in the early 1950s to less than 5% today. The 1974-79 Tokyo Round established additional international agreements (codes) on the use of subsidies and countervailing duties, anti-dumping actions, technical barriers to trade (standards), import licensing, government procurement, customs valuation, and trade in bovine meat, dairy products, and civil aircraft.
The Uruguay Round
The current Uruguay Round is in its final and critical year. It began in Punta del Este, Uruguay, in 1986 and is scheduled to conclude in Brussels, Belgium, in December 1990. Like previous rounds, the Uruguay Round includes a challenging set of negotiations on tariffs and non-tariff measures restricting trade. Efforts to improve market access include specialized negotiations to reduce barriers to trade in tropical products, natural resource-based products, and textiles. The United States also expects the final package to include agreements in services, trade-related investment measures, and protection of trade-related intellectual property. The agenda reflects the rising complexity of today's trade issues. Members hope to strengthen and renew the GATT with the successful conclusion of the most ambitious, comprehensive negotiations so far. The stakes are high. Failure of the Uruguay Round could result in an increase in unilateral protectionist measures by many countries. Increasing protectionism would slow the world's economic growth and retard the development of emerging democracies in Central America and Central and Eastern Europe.
US Policy
The US objective for the final conference in December 1990 is a meaningful agreement that will add new discipline to international trade and maintain the relevance and purpose of the GATT in the world economy. The United States has made it clear that, at a minimum, it wants comprehensive reforms of agricultural trade; expanded market access for goods, including sharply reduced tariffs; greater discipline over trade-distorting subsidies; meaningful disciplines in the "new areas" (intellectual property, services, and investment); and more complete integration of developing countries into the global trading system. A top US priority is agreement on new market-oriented rules to reduce, and ultimately eliminate, government measures that distort world agricultural trade. In the agricultural sector, the United States has received substantial support in calling for progressive elimination of export subsidies; substantially reduced tariffs, non-tariff barriers, and trade-distorting domestic supports; and resolution of health and safety issues. At the beginning of the Uruguay Round and at the mid-term review in 1989, countries committed themselves to making progressive and substantial cuts in agricultural support. Many countries that export agricultural products agree with us that a successful conclusion to the round must include fundamental agricultural reform. The US draft text on services would allow providers throughout the world to set up shop in foreign markets and compete like local firms. In the area of investment, the United States has proposed a "two-tiered" scheme that would prohibit some investment measures and establish rules governing the use of others. US goals on intellectual property include higher standards of protection, effective enforcement of those standards, and an effective dispute settlement mechanism. The United States hopes to gain agreement on improved rules for tighter discipline on trade-distorting subsidies and on trade restrictions for balance-of-payments reasons, swift and effective dispute settlement procedures, and greater commitment by developing countries to GATT rules. The United States has pressed its goal of achieving one set of trading rules for all GATT members to ensure that developing countries reap the full benefits of the international trading system. Developing countries account for more than $500 billion in trade and no longer are on the fringes of the system. (1) GATT members (November 1990): Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burma, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba , Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Finland, France, Gabon, The Gambia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guyana, Haiti, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela, Yugoslavia, Zaire, Zambia, Zimbabwe.(###)
US Department of State Dispatch, Vol 1, No 12, November 19, 1990 Title:

Chronology: Uruguay Round of Multilateral Negotiations, 1986-90

Date: Nov 19, 199011/19/90 Category: Chronologies Subject: International Law, Trade/Economics [TEXT] The following was prepared by the Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs.
September 20, 1986--
Trade ministers from 74 of 92 nations of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), meeting at Punta del Este, Uruguay, agreed to an agenda for a new round of world trade talks to be completed by December 1990. Officially called the Uruguay Round, the talks would become the eighth set of trade negotiations since the signing of the GATT treaty in 1947. The agenda featured proposals to extend GATT coverage to services, investments, and intellectual property and to eliminate trade-distorting government policies in agriculture.
June 10, 1987--
The leaders of the seven major industrialized nations and the European Community (EC), meeting at the Venice economic summit, endorsed the recently inaugurated Uruguay Round of GATT negotiations. Led by France, Germany, and the EC, however, the summit participants refused to support President Reagan's proposal to commit themselves to a date for the elimination of all agricultural subsidies.
July 6, 1987--
At the GATT negotiations underway in Geneva, the US delegation formally proposed that all nations eliminate all agricultural subsidies by the year 2000. EC spokesman Nico Wegter declared the proposal unrealistic.
June 21, 1988--
The heads of government of the major industrialized countries at the Toronto economic summit agreed to adopt a "framework approach" in efforts to reduce "all direct and indirect subsidies affecting agricultural trade."
July 13, 1988--
The Cairns Group of 14 food exporting nations propose a four-part plan to phase out all agricultural subsidies by the year 2000. The group consisted of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Fiji, Hungary, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Thailand, and Uruguay.
December 9, 1988--
The mid-term review of GATT negotiations broke down when EC representatives resisted the Reagan administration's demand that the contracting parties commit themselves to negotiate the complete elimination of subsidies. The EC promised only to work to reduce them. The meeting was adjourned after a group of Latin American nations, led by Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Uruguay threatened to block implementation of agreements reached in other areas unless the agricultural deadlock was resolved in favor of significant subsidy reductions.
April 7, 1989--
The United States and the European Community agreed to work toward "substantial progressive reductions" in long-term agricultural supports. There was no mention of the word "elimination" in the agreement, which paved the way for a resumption of the trade negotiations.
November 30, 1989--
At the GATT negotiations in Geneva, US delegates introduced a proposal calling for an end to trade subsidies and price supports on agricultural goods. EC representatives opposed the proposal, defending many of the subsidies under attack as legitimate tools of socioeconomic policy.
July 10, 1990--
At the Houston economic summit, the leaders of the seven major industrialized countries and the EC committed themselves to complete the Uruguay Round negotiations before the December 1990 deadline. President Bush, acting as host, fashioned a compromise based on the 1989 US-EC agreement whereby the participants pledged to make "substantial, progressive reductions in support and protection of agriculture, covering internal regimes, market access, and export subsidies."
October 15, 1990--
At the Geneva negotiations, the US GATT delegation introduced a proposal to cut agricultural export subsidies by 90% and overall farm supports and market barriers by 75% over a 10-year period.
November 6, 1990--
The European Community, after weeks of international debate, agreed to accept a 30% reduction in both agricultural price supports and market access barriers on farm imports over a 10-year period. Chancellor Kohl, defending local farming interests in anticipation of the December 2 German elections, complained that the EC proposal was too severe to European farmers. The Bush administration and the Cairns Group criticized the EC position for not going far enough.
Fundamentals of GATT
Most-favored-Nation Status. GATT members must extend to all other members the most favorable treatment granted to any trading partner. This non-discriminatory treatment ensures that any tariff reduction or other trade concession is automatically extended to all GATT parties, multiplying its liberalizing effects. The GATT allows some exceptions, primarily for customs unions such as the European Community and the US-Canada Free Trade Agreement.
National Treatment
. GATT members must give imported goods treatment equal to that accorded domestic goods in the domestic markets. Any restrictions applied to imported products also must apply to like domestic products.
Protection Through Tariffs
. The GATT generally prohibits quantitative restrictions or quotas. Contracting parties must, to the extent possible, provide any protection necessary to their industries solely by means of tariffs, which are transparent and subject to negotiation in the GATT.
Dispute Settlement
. Parties may challenge trade actions of other parties that may be consistent with the GATT. GATT members decide whether to accept by consensus the resulting findings of a panel of trade experts. (###)