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Gerald Ford Administration: Statement on Israel and Generalized System of Preferences

(November 11, 1975)

I have received satisfactory assurances that Israel will take action prior to January 1, 1976 to assure that, although Israel affords preferential treatment to products of other developed countries (those of the E.E.C.), there will be no significant adverse effect on United States commerce resulting from such preferential treatment.

In particular, the Government of Israel has provided satisfactory assurances that, for specified U.S. exports to Israel worth some $92 million (1974 data), Israel will reduce the applicable most_favored-nation (MFN) duty rates so as to eliminate, or in some cases virtually eliminate, the margin between such MFN rates and the preferential tariff rates being applied to the same products from E.E.C. countries. In addition, Israel will eliminate, at least during the life of the U.S. GSP, margins between the E.E.C. preferential tariff rates and the MFN rates whenever specified conditions are met for certain products. These products have been identified by the United States as important exports for which the U.S. and the E.E.C. countries are serious commercial competitors and for which tariff preferences, if applied, would be likely to affect adversely U.S. commercial interests. Israel will eliminate preferential tariff margins on these products whenever specific statistical criteria are met. Israel also will consult with the United States, at our request, concerning any other U.S. exports which may be affected adversely by its tariff preferences for products of E.E.C. countries.

For these reasons, Israel qualifies for the GSP under the terms of section 502(b) (3) of the Trade Act of 1974.

Sources: Public Papers of the President