Clerk session vote number: 374
Description: FREEDOM SUPPORT ACT
Bill summary: Freedom for Russia and Emerging Eurasian Democracies and Open Markets Support Act of 1992 or FREEDOM Support Act -
Title I: General Provisions
- Sets forth U.S. policy with respect to assistance to the independent states of the former Soviet Union (excluding Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania).
Expresses the sense of the Congress that such policy should make assistance to any of the independent states conditional on the termination of military and technical assistance, subsidies, and other forms
of assistance to Cuba from such states.
Permits the provision of assistance to governmental entities of the independent states only to the extent that such states are: (1) making significant progress toward and are committed to a democratic system; (2) respecting human rights; (3) making significant progress in and are committed to economic reform based on market principles, private ownership, and integration into the world economy; (4) respecting international law and obligations and adhering to the Helsinki Final Act of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe and the Charter of Paris; and (5) adhering to arms control obligations and to responsible security policies.
Prohibits U.S. assistance and other benefits under this Act (other than title V) or other laws to the Government of Azerbaijan until the President reports to the Congress that such government is taking steps to cease all blockades and uses of force against Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.
Directs the President to designate a coordinator within the Department of State to be responsible for coordinating assistance to the independent states.
Title II: Bilateral Economic Assistance
- Amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to authorize the President to provide assistance to the independent states to promote the following objectives: (1) meeting urgent humanitarian needs; (2) establishing a democratic and free society; (3) developing a free-market system; (4) promoting trade and investment; (5) converting military technologies and defense industries into civilian activities; (6) introducing market-based mechanisms for food distribution and encouraging policies that provide support for the agricultural sector; (7) promoting programs to strengthen quality health care and voluntary family planning, housing, and other components of a social safety net; (8) promoting educational reform; (9) promoting energy efficiency and production; (10) promoting environmental protection, conservation, and safety; and (11) improving transportation and telecommunications infrastructure and management.
Authorizes the President to promote the involvement of the U.S. private sector in such activities.
Authorizes the use of economic support fund assistance for assistance under this title.
Requires assistance to maximize the use of U.S. goods and services.
Establishes a Democracy Corps, a private, nonprofit corporation, to maintain a presence in the independent states. Directs the Administrator of the Agency for International Development to make an annual grant to the Democracy Corps. Requires the grant to be used by the Corps to assist at the local level in the development of: (1) institutions of democratic governance; and (2) nongovernmental organizations of a civil society. Directs the Corps to carry out its activities through the placement of teams of U.S. citizens with appropriate expertise in the independent states to: (1) provide advice and technical assistance; (2) make small grants to assist in the development of such institutions and organizations; (3) identify other sources of assistance; and (4) operate local centers to serve as information and educational centers and to encourage those involved in the development of democratic institutions, market-oriented economies, and civil societies.
Prohibits the use of funds for the Corps or any grant from the Corps to finance the campaigns of candidates for public office.
Sets forth: (1) requirements for the Board of Directors of the Corps and for its advisory committee; and (2) auditing requirements and congressional oversight procedures.
Earmarks a specified amount of funds authorized under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 for the Corps.
Title III: United States Information Agency and Department of State
- Authorizes appropriations for FY 1993 for: (1) the U.S. Information Agency for expenses with respect to the independent states; and (2) the Department of State for costs of personnel and expenses for new posts in the independent states.
Amends the Omnibus Diplomatic Security and Anti-Terrorism Act of 1986 to require at least 15 Fascell fellowships (for service at diplomatic or consular missions in the Soviet Union or Eastern Europe) to be provided in FY 1993. Makes funding available under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 for fellowships at missions in the independent states.
Title IV: International Financial Institutions and Trade Finance
- Amends the Bretton Woods Agreements Act to authorize: (1) the U.S. Governor of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to consent to an increase in the U.S. quota of the IMF and to the amendments to the Articles of Agreement of the IMF approved in resolution 45-3 of the Board of Governors; and (2) the U.S. Executive Director of the IMF to approve a pledge to sell gold to restore the resources of the Reserve Account of the Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility Trust.
Makes appropriations for the IMF quota increase.
Expresses the sense of the Congress with respect to encouraging efforts to address economic and political problems of nations making transitions to more open political and economic systems.
Directs the Secretary of the Treasury to report to the Congress on the debt incurred by the former Soviet Union held by commercial banks outside the independent states and the prospects for repayment of such debt.
Supports U.S. participation in a currency stabilization fund for the independent states.
Requires the Secretary to instruct the U.S. Executive Director of the IMF to urge the IMF to study the need for, and feasibility of, a currency stabilization fund for Ukraine and make recommendations with respect to the economic and policy conditions required for the success of such a fund.
Expresses the sense of the Congress that the President should ensure that the International Finance Corporation provides an ambitious lending program for such states.
Amends the International Finance Corporation Act to authorize the U.S. Governor of the Corporation to: (1) vote for any increase in capital stock needed to accommodate the requirements of the independent states; and (2) agree to amendments to the Corporation's Articles of Agreement to increase the votes by which the capital stock may be increased and by which the Articles of Agreement may be amended.
Amends the Bretton Woods Agreements Act to direct the Secretary of the Treasury to instruct the U.S. Executive Director of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) to urge the Bank to: (1) establish or continue programs to provide technical assistance to the independent states in support of democratic reforms, human rights, the rule of law, and market-oriented reforms; and (2) coordinate its assistance with assistance provided by other donors.
Amends the International Financial Institutions Act to add the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the IMF to the list of institutions through which the United States shall advance human rights.
Directs the Secretary to instruct the U.S. Executive Directors of international financial institutions, in assessing human rights, to consider, in relation to assistance to Russia and the other independent states, the responsiveness of such governments to providing a substantial accounting of Americans missing in action.
Requires the Export-Import Bank to report to the Congress on: (1) the demand for loans, guarantees, and insurance for trade between the United States and the independent states; and (2) recommendations for promoting trade between the United States and the independent states.
Amends the Export-Import Bank Act of 1945 to remove prohibitions on export credit with respect to Czechoslovakia, Estonia, East Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Albania, Bulgaria, Poland, Yugoslavia, Romania, and the Soviet Union.
Makes a provision of the Federal criminal code that prescribes penalties for financial transactions with foreign governments in default on obligations to the United States inapplicable with respect to obligations of the independent states of the former Soviet Union.
Title V: Nonproliferation and Disarmament Activities
- Amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to authorize the President to provide assistance to promote nonproliferation and disarmament activities by supporting: (1) dismantlement and destruction of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons, their delivery systems, and conventional weapons; (2) efforts to halt the proliferation of such weapons, systems, and related technologies; (3) establishment of science and technology centers for nonmilitary purposes; and (4) the conversion of military technologies and capabilities and defense industries of the independent states into civilian activities.
Authorizes the President to support one or more of such centers to provide incentives for weapons scientists and engineers of the former Soviet Union to apply their expertise to civilian projects. Waives provisions of title I that require an independent state to meet certain conditions in order to receive assistance with respect to such support. Sets forth reprogramming notification requirements and funding provisions with respect to such support.
Encourages the Secretaries of Defense and Energy to participate actively in U.S. efforts to stem the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1993 for international nonproliferation activities. Reduces amounts of funds authorized under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993 for procurement for the Defense Agencies.
Prohibits the obligation of funds during FY 1993 for the nonproliferation program unless expenditures for that program during FY 1993 have been determined by the Director of the Office of Management and Budget to be counted against the defense category of the discretionary spending limits for FY 1993.
Makes authorizations for international proliferation activities inapplicable if the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993 enacts the same authorities and authorizes appropriations.
Amends the Soviet Nuclear Threat Reduction Act of 1991 to increase the amount of funds that may be transferred from Department of Defense accounts for use in reducing the Soviet military threat. Makes such amendment inapplicable if the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993 enacts a similar amendment.
Authorizes the Director of the National Science Foundation to establish an endowed, nongovernmental, nonprofit foundation to: (1) promote and support joint research and development projects for peaceful purposes between scientists and engineers in the United States and the independent states on subjects of mutual interest; and (2) seek to establish joint nondefense industrial research, development, and demonstration activities through private sector linkages which may involve participation by scientists and engineers in the university or academic sectors.
Makes funds appropriated under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993 (to the extent available) available for the establishment of the endowment.
Requires an independent state, as a condition of participation in the foundation, to make a minimum contribution to the endowment which shall reflect its ability to make a financial contribution and its expected level of participation in the foundation's programs. Authorizes local currencies generated by U.S. assistance programs to be made available to the foundation.
Title VI: Space Trade and Cooperation
- Requires any request for a license or other approval described under this title that is submitted to a U.S. Government agency by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to be considered on an expedited basis by that agency. Provides for notification of designated congressional committees if an agency denies a request. Applies this title to requests for licenses or approval necessary to conduct discussions with an independent state with respect to the possible acquisition of any space hardware, space technology, or space service for integration into U.S. space projects that have been approved by the Congress.
Encourages the Office of Space Commerce of the Department of Commerce to conduct trade missions to appropriate independent states to familiarize U.S. aerospace industry representatives with space hardware, technologies, and services that may be available from the independent states and with the business practices and business climate of such states.
Directs the Office of Space Commerce to: (1) monitor the progress of any discussions being carried out by NASA with the independent states; and (2) advise the NASA Administrator of the impact on U.S. industry of each potential acquisition of space hardware, technology, or services from the independent states, including any anticompetitive issues the Office may observe.
Title VII: Other Provisions
- Amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to remove Czechoslovakia, Estonia, East Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Albania, Bulgaria, Poland, Yugoslavia, Romania, and the Soviet Union from the list of Communist countries to which assistance is prohibited.
Amends the Federal criminal code to remove the Soviet Union, East Germany, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Bulgaria, and Romania from a list of countries for which special restrictions apply with respect to legal commercial transactions.
Amends the Food for Progress Act of 1985 to consider the independent states to be emerging democracies for purposes of eligibility for agricultural commodities furnished under such Act. Authorizes the President to enter into agreements with private entities (as well as other entities currently listed under such Act) to furnish such commodities. Waives the annual tonnage limitation under such Act with respect to commodities furnished from stocks of the Commodity Credit Corporation (Corporation) during FY 1992 and 1993 to such states. Permits the Corporation to make commodities available on credit terms to the independent states.
Amends the Agricultural Development and Trade Act of 1990 to permit export credit guarantees to be available for the establishment or improvement of facilities or the provision of services or U.S. goods in emerging democracies by U.S. persons if such guarantees will promote the export of U.S. agricultural commodities.
Amends the Agricultural Act of 1978 to remove conditions on export financing of, and export credit guarantees with respect to, agricultural commodities by the Corporation that require the development of the importing country as a foreign market on a long-term basis or the improvement of the capability of such country to use such commodities on a long-term basis. Makes such amendments applicable only with respect to the independent states. Authorizes the Corporation to use such financing and guarantees to assist emerging democracies that have committed to carry out policies that promote economic freedom, private domestic production of food commodities for domestic consumption, and the expansion of domestic markets for the purchase and sale of such commodities.
Expresses the sense of the Congress that the President should encourage the involvement of multinational organizations to monitor the transport and distribution of food aid within the independent states.
Declares that the Corporation's export credit guarantee and export enhancement programs should be administered in a manner that contributes to the achievement of the objective that the U.S. share of world trade in processed agricultural products and high-value agricultural products is not less than 15 percent.
Directs the Corporation to ensure that at least 35 percent of the total amount of credit guarantees issued in connection with sales to the independent states under the export credit guarantee program (and 25 percent of the funds expended under the export enhancement program) in a fiscal year are issued (or expended) to promote the export of processed and high-value agricultural products, with the balance issued (or expended) to promote the export of bulk or raw agricultural commodities.
Makes such percentage requirements inapplicable only if the percentage of the total amount of: (1) credit guarantees issued in a fiscal year to promote the export of such products to all countries is less than 25 percent; and (2) funds expended and value of commodities made available in a fiscal year to promote such exports to all countries is less than 15 percent.
Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to make quarterly reports to the Congress on the costs and imputed revenues attributable to exports of commodities as well as an examination of the effects of export efforts on employment levels and opportunities in the U.S. agricultural sectors and related industries.
Amends the Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 1990 to extend certain provisions granting refugee status or permanent residence to nationals of the independent states, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
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Bill titles: To authorize supplemental assistance for the former Soviet republics.
Links for more info on the vote: congress.gov