United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Jul 06, 2022

§ 2707.
Center for the Study of Western Hemispheric Trade

The Commissioner of Customs, after consultation with appropriate officials in the State of Texas, is authorized and directed to make grants to an institution (or a consortium of such institutions) to assist such institution in planning, establishing, and operating a Center for the Study of Western Hemispheric Trade (hereafter in this section referred to as the “Center”). The Commissioner of Customs shall make the first grant not later than December 1, 1994, and the Center shall be established not later than February 1, 1995.

Scope of Center
The Center shall be a year-round program operated by an institution located in the State of Texas (or a consortium of such institutions), the purpose of which is to promote and study trade between and among Western Hemisphere countries. The Center shall conduct activities designed to examine—
the impact of the NAFTA on the economies in, and trade within, the Western Hemisphere;
the negotiation of any future free trade agreements, including possible accessions to the NAFTA; and
adjusting tariffs, reducing nontariff barriers, improving relations among customs officials, and promoting economic relations among countries in the Western Hemisphere.
Consultation; selection criteria
The Commissioner of Customs shall consult with appropriate officials of the State of Texas and private sector authorities with respect to selecting, planning, and establishing the Center. In selecting the appropriate institution, the Commissioner of Customs shall give consideration to—
the institution’s ability to carry out the programs and activities described in this section; and
any resources the institution can provide the Center in addition to Federal funds provided under this program.
Programs and activities
The Center shall conduct the following activities:
Provide forums for international discussion and debate for representatives from countries in the Western Hemisphere regarding issues which affect trade and other economic relations within the hemisphere, including the impact of the NAFTA on individual economies and the desirability and feasibility of possible accessions to the NAFTA by such countries.
Conduct studies and research projects on subjects which affect Western Hemisphere trade, including tariffs, customs, regional and national economics, business development and finance, production and personnel management, manufacturing, agriculture, engineering, transportation, immigration, telecommunications, medicine, science, urban studies, border demographics, social anthropology, and population.
Publish materials, disseminate information, and conduct seminars and conferences to support and educate representatives from countries in the Western Hemisphere who seek to do business with or invest in other Western Hemisphere countries.
Provide grants, fellowships, endowed chairs, and financial assistance to outstanding scholars and authorities from Western Hemisphere countries.
Provide grants, fellowships, and other financial assistance to qualified graduate students, from Western Hemisphere countries, to study at the Center.
Implement academic exchange programs and other cooperative research and instructional agreements with the complementary Dante B. Fascell North-South Center at the University of Miami at Coral Gables.
For purposes of this section—

The term “NAFTA” means the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Western Hemisphere countries

The terms “Western Hemisphere countries”, “countries in the Western Hemisphere”, and “Western Hemisphere” mean Canada, the United States, Mexico, countries located in South America, beneficiary countries (as defined by section 2702 of this title), the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the United States Virgin Islands.

Fees for seminars and publications

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a grant made under this section may provide that the Center may charge a reasonable fee for attendance at seminars and conferences and for copies of publications, studies, reports, and other documents the Center publishes. The Center may waive such fees in any case in which it determines imposing a fee would impose a financial hardship and the purposes of the Center would be served by granting such a waiver.

Duration of grant

The Commissioner of Customs is directed to make grants to any institution or institutions selected as the Center for fiscal years 1994, 1995, 1996, and 1997.

The Commissioner of Customs shall, no later than July 1, 1994, and annually thereafter for years for which grants are made, submit a written report to the Committee on Finance of the Senate and the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives. The first report shall include—
a statement identifying the institution or institutions selected as the Center;
the reasons for selecting the institution or institutions as the Center; and
the plan of such institution or institutions for operating the Center.
Each subsequent report shall include information with respect to the operations of the Center, the collaboration of the Center with, and dissemination of information to, Government policymakers and the business community with respect to the study of Western Hemispheric trade by the Center, and the plan and efforts of the Center to continue operations after grants under this section have expired.
(Pub. L. 98–67, title II, § 219, as added Pub. L. 103–182, title V, § 515(a), Dec. 8, 1993, 107 Stat. 2158; amended Pub. L. 104–295, § 21(d), Oct. 11, 1996, 110 Stat. 3530; Pub. L. 106–29, § 2(a), May 21, 1999, 113 Stat. 54.)
cite as: 19 USC 2707