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Letter to Congressional Leaders Transmitting the Report on International Exchange Programs

July 28, 1994

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. Chairman:)

As required by section 229(a) of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1994 and 1995 (Public Law 103-236), I am submitting the enclosed report on Federally-funded international exchange programs together with an analysis of the objectives of these programs and the extent to which the objectives of some of these programs are similar. Copies of the Fiscal Year 1993 report, International Exchange and Training Activities of the U.S. Government, prepared by the United States Information Agency (USIA) are enclosed.

United States Government educational, cultural, scientific, and professional exchange programs enhance communication and understanding between the United States and other societies. They are among the most effective tools to achieve long and intermediate range objectives of U.S. foreign policy. In Fiscal Year 1993, the Federal Government supported more than 105,000 international exchange participants at a cost of $1.4 billion.

Among the numerous categories of exchange activities, we have identified two in which similar programs are administered by different agencies: overseas foreign language and area studies undertaken by American citizens and the exchanges related to the encouragement of democratic processes. The programs in foreign language and area studies abroad by Americans, as currently legislated, are managed by the Department of Defense, the Department of Education, the Department of State, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission, and USIA. The programs are identified in the attachment to this letter. In the second category in which we have identified similar programs, democracy exchanges, subtleties of defining and measuring objectives require additional time for analysis. This will be done by October 31.

In an environment of funding constraints, it is important that international exchange programs be administered in a manner that ensures clarity of objectives and cost effectiveness. To help plan and better coordinate exchange activities, I have instructed the Director of USIA to convene periodic meetings of the major exchange-sponsoring departments and agencies. I have also asked relevant agencies to submit appropriate data to the USIA Director prior to these meetings.

My Administration will continue to work closely with the Congress to realize our shared goals of improving efficiency and reducing costs.



NOTE: Identical letters were sent to Thomas S. Foley, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Claiborne Pell, chairman, Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

William J. Clinton, Letter to Congressional Leaders Transmitting the Report on International Exchange Programs Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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