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Jackson-Vanik and Ukraine One Year Later:  An Assessment
March 23, 2007
Washington, DC

March 23, 2007 marks the one year anniversary of Ukraine’s graduation from the Jackson-Vanik Amendment and the establishment of permanent normal trade relations between the United States and Ukraine.

The Coalition for a Secure and Democratic Ukraine cordially invites you to watch “Jackson-Vanik and Ukraine One Year Later:  An Assessment.”

Introductory Remarks:  Vera Andrushkiw, U.S.-Ukraine Foundation Vice President

Panelists:
Ambassador Steven Pifer, Co-Chair of Coalition for a Secure and Democratic Ukraine
Ambassador William Green Miller, Co-Chair of Coalition for a Secure and Democratic Ukraine
Mark Levin, Executive Director, NCSJ

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United States Graduates Ukraine from Jackson-Vanik Amendment

President Bush is joined by, from left to right, U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar, R- Ind.; U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach, R- Pa.; U.S. Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif.; U.S. Rep. Candice Miller, R-Mich; U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., and U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, R-Pa. White House photo by Kimberlee Hewitt.

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President Bush Signs Bill to Graduate Ukraine From Jackson-Vanik

March 23, 2006

WASHINGTON, DC - President of the United States George W. Bush today lifted Ukraine from the provisions of the Jackson-Vanik Amendment by signing into law H.R. 1053, a bill which authorizes the Extension of Nondiscriminatory Treatment to the Products of Ukraine.

President Bush declared that "The bill I sign today marks the beginning of a new era in our history with Ukraine."

The President pointed out that "As Ukraine embraces democracy and more open trade, our nation's friendship will grow. President Yushchenko has made reforms to increase transparency and provide intellectual property protection and strengthen the enforcement of the rule of law.

These reforms have taken great conviction. And earlier this month, our two nations signed a bilateral agreement that will establish the terms of trade between our nations when Ukraine joins the World Trade Organization. We support Ukraine's goal of joining the WTO, and we will help resolve the remaining steps required for entry as quickly as possible. As the Ukrainian government continues to build on a record of progress at home, we will help Ukraine joins the institutions that unite free nations and become a part of Europe that is whole, free, and at peace." Full text of President Bush's Speech

The ceremony took place in the Old Executive Office Building. Those in attendance included Ukraine's Ambassador to the United States, Oleh Shamshur, Senator Richard G. Lugar (R-IN), Representative Jim Gerlach (R-PA), Representative Tom Lantos (D-CA), Representative Candice S. Miller (R-MI), Representative Curt Weldon (R-PA), and Representative Michael G Fitzpatrick (R- PA), as well as Jackson-Vanik Graduation Coalition members.

The event marked the finality of a “Cold War relic” from Ukraine’s Soviet past. The 1974 Amendment, named for Senators Henry "Scoop" Jackson and Charles Vanik, imposed trade restrictions by the U.S. on the Soviet Union in response to its poor human rights policies, particularly restrictions on the emigration of religious minorities. More than thirty years later and during the past 15 years of independence, Ukraine built a strong record of allowing open emigration and created conditions for religious minorities to pursue their beliefs freely. Ukraine’s graduation from the Jackson-Vanik Amendment was earned by this record of success.

While the road to the White House was a long one for Ukraine’s eventual graduation, it is important to note that the action taken today was almost a year following President Yushchenko’s initial visit to Washington during which the joint Bush-Yushchenko April 4, 2005 joint statement called for “immediately ending application of Jackson-Vanik to Ukraine.”

On November 18, 2005 the Senate passed by unanimous consent S. 632 to graduate Ukraine from the provisions of the Jackson-Vanik Amendment. Similar action was taken by the House of Representatives on March 8, 2006 when it passed H.R. 1053. The final vote results were 417 votes cast in favor of the bill, 2 against, and 3 abstentions. On Friday, March 9, 2006 the Senate passed the vote on a bill introduced by Senator Richard Lugar by unanimous consent agreeing by that with the House H.R. 1053 bill.

Ukraine Graduated From Jackson-Vanik

President Bush is flanked by, from left to right, U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar, R- Ind.; U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach, R- Pa.; U.S. Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif.; U.S. Rep. Candice Miller, R-Mich (partly seen); U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., and U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, R- Pa.
U.S.-Ukraine Foundation photo by Bohdan Kovalchuk.
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President Bush with Ambassador Shamshur

President George W. Bush shakes hands with Ukrainian Ambassador Oleh Shamshur, after President Bush signed H.R. 1053, to authorize the Extension of Nondiscriminatory Treatment to the Products of Ukraine, Thursday, March 23, 2006, in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington. White House photo by Kimberlee Hewitt.

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Jackson-Vanik Graduation Coalition members with Representative Fitzpatrick

U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick R-Pa with former Congressman Charles Dougherty, U.S.-Ukraine Foundation President Nadia McConnell, and Jackson-Vanik Graduation Coalition members at the Signing Ceremony. Photo by Marta Matselioukh

 

 

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