Message to the Senate Transmitting the Protocol of Amendment to the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures
To the Senate of the United States:
I transmit herewith for Senate advice and consent to accession, the Protocol of Amendment to the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures done at Brussels on June 26, 1999. The Protocol amends the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures done at Kyoto on May 18, 1973, and replaces the Annexes to the 1973 Convention with a General Annex and 10 Specific Annexes (together, the "Amended Convention"). I am also transmitting, for the information of the Senate, the report of the Department of State on the Amended Convention.
The Amended Convention seeks to meet the needs of international trade and customs services through the simplification and harmonization of customs procedures. It responds to modernization in business and administrative methods and techniques and to the growth of international trade, without compromising standards of customs control. Accession by the United States would further the U.S. interest in reducing non-tariff barriers to international trade.
By acceding to the Protocol, a state consents to be bound by the amended 1973 Convention and the new General Annex. At the same time, or anytime thereafter, Parties have the option of accepting any of the Specific Annexes (or Chapters thereof), and may at that time enter reservations with respect to any Recommended Practices contained in the Specific Annexes. In accordance with these terms, I propose that the United States accept seven of the Specific Annexes in their entirety and all the Chapters, but one of each of two other Specific Annexes (A-E, G, and H, as well as Chapters 1, 2, and 3 of F, and Chapters 1, 3, 4, and 5 of J), and enter the reservations proposed by the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection as set forth in the enclosure to the report of the Department of State. The provisions for which reservation is recommended conflict with current U.S. legislation or regulations. With these proposed reservations, no new implementing legislation is necessary in order to comply with the Amended Convention.
Accession to the Protocol by the United States would contribute to important U.S. interests. First, accession by the United States would benefit the United States and U.S. businesses by facilitating greater economic growth, increasing foreign investment, and stimulating U.S. exports through more predictable, standard, and harmonized customs procedures governing cross-border trade transactions. Setting forth standardized and simplified methods for conducting customs business is important for U.S. trade interests in light of the demands of increased trade flows, as is the use of modernized technology and techniques for customs facilitation. These achievements can best be pursued by the United States as a Party to the Amended Convention. Second, through early accession, the United States can continue to take a leadership role in the areas of customs and international trade facilitation as the U.S. accession would encourage other nations, particularly developing nations, to accede as well.
I recommend that the Senate give early and favorable consideration to the Protocol and give its advice and consent to accession.
GEORGE W. BUSH
The White House,
April 30, 2003.
George W. Bush, Message to the Senate Transmitting the Protocol of Amendment to the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/215996