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Chamber Calls on House to Move Swiftly on FSC/ETI Bill

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - 8:00pm

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Chamber of Commerce today urged House lawmakers to approve quickly foreign sales corporation/extraterritorial income legislation, following Tuesday night's Senate action on the issue.

"The Senate's overwhelming vote gives this issue tremendous momentum and the House must follow suit," said Bruce Josten, Chamber executive vice president. "The longer Congress takes to approve a final bill, the more American jobs are put at risk."

After the World Trade Organization ruled the United States out of compliance with its international obligations, the European Union imposed tariffs on certain U.S. imports beginning March 1, 2004. Tariffs are now at seven percent, and will continue to increase one percent every month unless Congress takes action and the legislation is signed into law.

The Chamber welcomed final Senate action on S.1637 because it would bring the United States into WTO compliance, leading to the elimination of the EU tariffs on American goods.

The bill, which was shepherded through the Senate by Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and ranking member Max Baucus (D-Mont.), contains provisions that would bring much needed tax reform to enhance the competitiveness of American businesses, according to the Chamber.

"This bill provides support for domestic jobs and for workers by clearing significant impediments to exports and expansion," Josten noted. "The Chamber will continue to lead efforts for quick House action on FSC/ETI. Congress must get these bills to a House-Senate conference."

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world's largest business federation representing more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector and region.

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