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Public Papers - 1991 - October

Message to the Congress on the Determination Not To Impose Sanctions Against Mexico Under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade


To the Congress of the United States:

Pursuant to the provisions of subsection (b) of the Pelly Amendment to the Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967, as amended (22 U.S.C. 1978), I am reporting to you that on August 22, 1991, the Secretary of Commerce reported to me that the country of Mexico has been under a court-ordered embargo since February 22, 1991. No yellowfin tuna or products derived from yellowfin tuna harvested by Mexico with purse seines in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean may be imported into the United States.

The Secretary's letter to me was deemed to be a certification for the purposes of subsection (a) of the Pelly Amendment. Subsection (a) requires that I consider and, at my discretion, order the prohibition of imports into the United States of fish and fish products from Mexico, to the extent that such prohibition is consistent with the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade. Subsection (b) requires me to report to the Congress within 60 days following certification on the actions taken pursuant to the certification; if fish and wildlife imports have not been prohibited, the report must state the reasons for the lack of a prohibition.

After thorough review, I have determined that, given that an embargo is currently in effect and given the continuing negotiations with Mexico toward an international dolphin conservation program in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean, sanctions will not be imposed against Mexico at this time. Mexico will continue to be certified, and we will review Mexico's marine mammal incidental mortality under the Marine Mammal Protection Act if a finding is requested for 1992. I will make further reports and recommendations to you as developments warrant.

George Bush

The White House,

October 21, 1991.

George Bush Presidential Library and Museum
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