July 23, 2001.
Representative EDOLPHUS TOWNS,
Rayburn House Office Building,
DEAR REPRESENTATIVE TOWNS:
Association members include major U.S. corporations that have been in the forefront of Western investment in Kazakhstan . They are very deliberate about their decisions to enter emerging market economies and have seen the many positive advantages that investment in Kazakhstan affords. As energy sector revenues grow and spread through the country's economy, the Association seeks to encourage diversified investment in other sectors, such as agribusiness, mining, petrochemicals, and telecommunications. For these investments to be economic, however, it will be important for Kazakhstani firms, as well as joint ventures formed with American investors, to have predictable nondiscriminatory access to U.S. markets. Looking ahead to Kazakhstan's eventual accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO), our members will be particularly interested in our government being able to avail itself of all its rights under the WTO with respect to Kazakhstan.
Historical criteria that have withheld nondiscriminatory access for Kazakhstan products are no longer relevant. The country continues to make stepwise political and economic reforms that are attracting and retaining foreign investors. Kazakhstan courageously chose to de-nuclearize after independence and has fully supported nuclear nonproliferation objectives, dismantling bombers, missiles, and related facilities. It has complied with U.S. emigration requirements, and recently has taken considerable strides toward creating a free-market economic system--a development already recognized by the European Union. While the U.S. and Kazakhstan concluded a bilateral investment treaty in 1992, from its independence, Kazakhstan has demonstrated a strong desire to build friendly and cooperative ties with the U.S. across a broad range of relationships. The Association, therefore, believes it is in the best interests of the United States to approve PNTR for Kazakhstan and promote further development of more normal trade and investment relations between the two countries.
Similar letters have been sent to Representative Thomas and Representative Rangel of the House Ways and Means Committee, the Chairman and Ranking Minority member of the House International Relations Committee, and, regarding S. 168, to the Chairmen and Ranking Minority Members of the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In addition, sponsors, co-sponsors, and each member of the above committees have received courtesy copies.
The member companies and organizations listed below support the Association's position favoring PNTR for Kazakhstan and the respective House and Senate bills. Should you or your staff have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at (202) 434-8791.
William C. Veale,
List of Members Supporting H.R. 1318: ABB Inc.; Access Industries, Inc.; ACDI/VOCA; The AES Corporation; American Councils for Int'l Education; Bechtel Corporation; Chevron Corporation; Citizens Network for Foreign Affairs; Columbia University Caspian Project; Coudert Brothers; Exxon Mobil Corporation; Deere & Company; Fluor Corporation; Halliburton Company; International Tax & Investment Center; NUKEM Inc.; Parker Drilling Company; Parsons Corporation (membership currently being processed); Phillips Petroleum Company; Texaco Inc.
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