H.R. 2819 (108th): Modern-Day Marshall Plan for Eurasia and the Middle East Act of 2003

108th Congress, 2003–2004. Text as of Jul 22, 2003 (Introduced).

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HR 2819 IH

108th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2819

To establish a program to provide assistance for developing countries of Eurasia and the Middle East.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 22, 2003

Mr. HOEFFEL (for himself, Mr. HOUGHTON, and Mr. MCDERMOTT) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on International Relations


A BILL

To establish a program to provide assistance for developing countries of Eurasia and the Middle East.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ‘Modern-Day Marshall Plan for Eurasia and the Middle East Act of 2003’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS; PURPOSES.

    (a) FINDINGS- Congress finds the following:

      (1) After World War II, the United States established a program to provide for the reconstruction of Europe, named after General George C. Marshall and commonly referred to as the ‘Marshall Plan’, which made a significant contribution to the stimulation of economic growth and international trade in Europe from 1948 to 1951, thereby helping to stem the spread of Communism and to foster stable political governments in Europe.

      (2) By providing assistance to Europe through the Marshall Plan, the United States recognized the direct link between economic growth and political stability, thereby investing resources into economic development and assistance.

      (3) The Marshall Plan is chiefly characterized by its integration of recipients into the development process, forming a partnership whereby European countries agreed to a ‘plan of action’ that committed Europe to take steps toward solution of its economic and political problems prior to the formulation of a program of assistance.

      (4) On April 17, 2002, President Bush stated in a speech at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI): ‘[General] Marshall knew that our military victory against enemies in World War II had to be followed by a moral victory that resulted in better lives for individual human beings. America has a much greater purpose than just eliminating threats and containing resentment. Because we believe in the dignity and value of every individual, America seeks hope and opportunity for all people in all cultures.’.

      (5) A principal objective of United States foreign assistance programs, as stated in the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, continues to be the ‘encouragement and sustained support of the people of developing countries in their efforts to acquire the knowledge and resources essential to development and to build the economic, political, and social institutions which will improve the quality of their lives.’.

      (6) Significant poverty, corruption, and human rights abuses in many countries of Eurasia and the Middle East contribute to the political and economic deterioration of those regions.

      (7) The potential resources of many countries of Eurasia and the Middle East are rich and plentiful and can be developed in peace and in partnership through cooperation and mutual assistance.

      (8) The attacks against the United States that occurred on September 11, 2001, and the subsequent global war on terrorism, have enhanced United States strategic concern for the economic and political future of countries of Eurasia and the Middle East.

      (9) United States foreign assistance programs continue to influence the direction of the Central Asia, Eurasia, and Middle East regions.

      (10) In 1972, the United Nations voted to recommend that developed countries should contribute an amount equal to 0.7 percent of their gross domestic product for assistance to developing countries, however, the United States currently provides an amount equal to only 0.1 percent of its gross domestic product for assistance to developing countries.

      (11) The magnitude of the economic, humanitarian, and political challenges in the Eurasia and Middle East regions is extensive and demands consistent and enhanced input and assistance from the United States, particularly through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as well as extensive coordination with other appropriate United States agencies and international donor organizations, in order to effectively implement development assistance and effectively eliminate the causes of terrorism in these regions.

    (b) PURPOSES- The purposes of this Act are--

      (1) to enhance and increase United States foreign assistance to the developing countries of Eurasia and the Middle East; and

      (2) to assist such countries of Eurasia and the Middle East to grow, prosper, and to seize the opportunities of the global economy in order to achieve transparent, accountable, and politically stable democratic forms of government in such countries.

SEC. 3. SENSE OF CONGRESS; STATEMENT OF POLICY.

    (a) SENSE OF CONGRESS- It is the sense of Congress that the United States Government should recognize that to promote politically stable and economically prosperous countries in Eurasia and the Middle East is in the national security interests of the United States.

    (b) STATEMENT OF POLICY- It shall be the policy of the United States--

      (1) to promote stable democracies and market economies in countries of Eurasia and the Middle East;

      (2) to encourage regular dialogue between United States Government officials and human rights organizations, civic organizers, reform-minded politicians and democratic activists in order to further democratic reform and economic stability in developing countries of Eurasia and the Middle East; and

      (3) to encourage dialogue between United States Government officials and private sector individuals regarding the opening of markets and transparency in business practices in countries of Eurasia and the Middle East.

SEC. 4. ASSISTANCE TO PROMOTE POLITICAL STABILITY IN THE COUNTRIES OF EURASIA AND THE MIDDLE EAST.

    (a) IN GENERAL- The President is authorized, notwithstanding any other provision of law, to establish and implement a program to provide economic assistance for the developing countries of Eurasia and the Middle East in order to promote political stability in such countries.

    (b) TYPES OF ASSISTANCE- Assistance provided under the program established under subsection (a) shall include assistance to promote--

      (1) economic growth, trade, education, and infrastructure;

      (2) health, including assistance to prevent, treat, and monitor HIV/AIDS, family planning assistance, and child survival assistance; and

      (3) democracy building and human rights.

    (c) TERMS AND CONDITIONS- Assistance under the program established under subsection (a)--

      (1) shall be provided in accordance with the terms and conditions utilized by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the International Monetary Fund under the ‘Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers’ process established by such institutions; and

      (2) shall be provided on such other terms and conditions as the President determines to be appropriate.

    (d) COORDINATION WITH OTHER PROGRAMS- The President shall coordinate the program established under subsection (a) with all other programs under which economic assistance is provided to countries of Eurasia and the Middle East.

    (e) MULTILATERAL ASSISTANCE- The President, acting through the Secretary of State and other appropriate officials of the United States Government, shall urge other appropriate countries to provide assistance to countries of Eurasia and the Middle East in accordance with the terms and conditions of assistance provided by the United States under this Act.

SEC. 5. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this Act such sums as may be necessary for fiscal year 2004 and each subsequent fiscal year.

    (b) AVAILABILITY- Amounts appropriated pursuant to the authorization of appropriations under subsection (a) are authorized to remain available until expended.