By the President of the United States of America
1. On April 22, 1985, the United States entered into the Agreement on the Establishment of a Free Trade Area between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Israel ("the FTA Agreement"), approved by the Congress in the United States-Israel Free Trade Area Implementation Act of 1985 ("the FTA Act") (19 U.S.C. 2112 note).
2. The United States and Israel acknowledge that they have differing interpretations as to the meaning of certain rights and obligations in the FTA Agreement, in particular with respect to market access for certain United States agricultural products. In order to maintain the general level of reciprocal and mutually advantageous concessions with respect to agricultural trade with Israel, on November 4, 1996, the Government of the United States entered into an agreement with the Government of Israel concerning certain aspects of trade in agricultural products, effective December 4, 1996, through December 31, 2001 ("the 1996 Agreement").
3. Section 4(b) of the FTA Act provides that, whenever the President determines that it is necessary to maintain the general level of reciprocal and mutually advantageous concessions with respect to Israel provided for by the FTA Agreement, the President may proclaim such withdrawal, suspension, modification, or continuance of any duty, or such continuance of existing duty-free or excise treatment, or such additional duties as the President determines to be required or appropriate to carry out the FTA Agreement.
4. Pursuant to section 4(b) of the FTA Act, I have determined that it is necessary, in order to maintain the general level of reciprocal and mutually advantageous concessions with respect to Israel, to provide through the close of December 31, 2001, access into the United States customs territory for specified quantities of certain agricultural products of Israel free of duty or certain fees or other import charges.
5. Section 604 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2483) ("the 1974 Act"), authorizes the President to embody in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States ("HTS") the substance of the relevant provisions of that Act, and of other acts affecting import treatment, and actions thereunder, including the removal, modification, continuance, or imposition of any rate of duty or other import restriction.
Now, Therefore, I, William J. Clinton, President of the United States of America, acting under the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including but not limited to section 4 of the FTA Act and section 604 of the 1974 Act, do hereby proclaim:
(1) In order to implement aspects of the 1996 Agreement with the Government of Israel concerning certain aspects of trade in agricultural products, the HTS is modified as provided in the Annex to this proclamation.
(2) Any provisions of previous proclamations and Executive orders that are inconsistent with the actions taken in this proclamation are superseded to the extent of such inconsistency.
(3) The modifications to the HTS made by the Annex to this proclamation shall be effective with respect to goods entered, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on or after the dates set forth in such Annex, and the tariff treatment set forth therein shall be effective as provided in such Annex through December 31, 2001.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this second day of December, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-first.
William J. Clinton
Sources: Public Papers of the President