H.R. 5902 (112th): To establish a Congressional Advisory Commission on the Implementation of United States Policy under the Taiwan Relations ...

...Act.

112th Congress, 2011–2013. Text as of Jun 06, 2012 (Introduced).

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I

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 5902

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

June 6, 2012

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs

A BILL

To establish a Congressional Advisory Commission on the Implementation of United States Policy under the Taiwan Relations Act.

1.

Findings; purpose

(a)

Findings

Congress finds the following:

(1)

The Taiwan Relations Act (Public Law 96–8; 22 U.S.C. 3301 et seq.), enacted in 1979, has continued for 33 years to be the cornerstone of United States–Taiwan relations and has served as an anchor for peace and security in the Western Pacific region.

(2)

The Taiwan Relations Act declares that it is the policy of the United States—

(A)

to preserve and promote extensive, close, and friendly commercial, cultural, and other relations between the people of the United States and the people on Taiwan, as well as the people on the China mainland and all other peoples of the Western Pacific area;

(B)

to declare that peace and stability in the area are in the political, security, and economic interests of the United States, and are matters of international concern;

(C)

to make clear that the United States decision to establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China rests upon the expectation that the future of Taiwan will be determined by peaceful means;

(D)

to consider any effort to determine the future of Taiwan by other than peaceful means, including by boycotts or embargoes, a threat to the peace and security of the Western Pacific area and of grave concern to the United States;

(E)

to provide Taiwan with arms of a defensive character; and

(F)

to maintain the capacity of the United States to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion that would jeopardize the security, or the social or economic system, of the people on Taiwan.

(3)

Nothing contained in the Taiwan Relations Act shall contravene the interest of the United States in human rights, especially with respect to the human rights of all the approximately 23,000,000 inhabitants of Taiwan. The preservation and enhancement of the human rights of all the people on Taiwan are hereby reaffirmed as objectives of the United States.

(4)

The Taiwan Relations Act, in furthering the national interests of the United States in the Western Pacific region, has mandated that the United States will make available to Taiwan such defense articles and defense services in such quantity as may be necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability, thus allowing the people of Taiwan to preserve a peaceful, democratic, and prosperous way of life.

(5)

The future of Taiwan must be determined in a peaceful manner and with the assent of the people of Taiwan.

(6)

The anti-secession law, passed by the National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China, was found by House Concurrent Resolution 98, passed in the House of Representatives on March 16, 2005, to provide a legal justification for the use of force against Taiwan, altering the status quo in the region, and thus is of grave concern to the United States..

(7)

The 2011 Department of Defense’s Annual Report to Congress on Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China noted that the People’s Liberation Army seeks the capability to deter Taiwan independence and influence Taiwan to settle the dispute on Beijing’s terms while developing capabilities intended to deter, delay, or deny possible U.S. support for the island in the event of conflict. The balance of cross-Strait military forces and capabilities continues to shift in the mainland’s favor.. The report also states the PLA has deployed between 1,000 and 1,200 short-range ballistic missiles (SRBM) to units opposite Taiwan.

(8)

The United States has sought diplomatically to preserve Taiwan’s international space, and has sought to secure Taiwan’s meaningful participation in such international organizations as the World Health Organization (WHO).

(9)

The total value of trade between the United States and Taiwan in 2011 was approximately 67,200,000,000, and Taiwan ranked as the 10th largest trading partner of the United States.

(10)

Given that the Taiwan Relations Act states that it is the policy of the United States to preserve and promote extensive, close, and friendly commercial, cultural, and other relations between the people of the United States and the people on Taiwan, it is in the economic interests of the United States and the national security interests of Taiwan for our two peoples to further strengthen their trade and investment ties.

(b)

Purpose

The purpose of this Act is to establish a commission to review and report to Congress on the implementation of the Taiwan Relations Act and on United States policy in regard to Taiwan since 2000.

2.

Establishment of Commission

There is established in the legislative branch the Congressional Advisory Commission on the Implementation of United States Policy under the Taiwan Relations Act.

3.

Duties

The Commission shall—

(1)

assess the sufficiency of defense articles and services made available to Taiwan by the United States for the purpose of maintaining Taiwan’s self-defense capability, including whether Taiwan’s air and air defense forces retain the ability to effectively defend Taiwan against the ballistic missile and air threats posed by the People’s Republic of China;

(2)

review the operational planning, policy reviews, and other preparations of the United States since 2000 to implement section 2(b)(6) and subsections (a), (b), and (c) of section 3 of the Taiwan Relations Act, and evaluate the compliance of these processes with the requirements of section 3(2) of the Taiwan Relations Act and the Six Assurances provided to Taiwan in July 1982;

(3)

identify current and potential threats to the security, social, or economic system of the people on Taiwan, and assess the extent to which the United States retains the capability to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion that would jeopardize the security, social, or economic system, of the people on Taiwan;

(4)

evaluate the sufficiency and effectiveness of measures undertaken by the United States since 2000 to continue and promote extensive commercial, cultural, and other relations between the people of the United States and the people on Taiwan, and recommend future steps for strengthening trade and investment ties with Taiwan in furtherance of the United States national economic and security interests;

(5)

review the measures undertaken by the United States since 2000 with regard to the preservation and enhancement of the human rights of all the people on Taiwan, including the strengthening of democratic governance and rule of law in accordance with section 2(3) of the Taiwan Relations Act;

(6)

identify and recommend available United States policy options to assist Taiwan in broadening its international space, including Taiwan’s ability to participate meaningfully in the World Health Organization and other international organizations, and to ensure that the future of Taiwan will be determined by peaceful means, taking into account the forms and effectiveness of any coercive strategies undertaken by the People’s Republic of China to undermine Taiwan’s freedom of action; and

(7)

make findings and recommendations on available policy options for the United States to advance toward a normalization of the relationship with the Government of Taiwan, including the desirability of such measures as the resumption of visits by cabinet-level officials between the United States and Taiwan and requiring the advice and consent of the Senate for the individual appointed by the President to serve as the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan.

4.

Composition

(a)

Members

The Commission shall be composed of five members, of whom—

(1)

one member shall be appointed by the President;

(2)

one member shall be appointed by the majority leader of the Senate;

(3)

one member shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives;

(4)

one member shall be appointed by the minority leader of the Senate; and

(5)

one member shall be appointed by the minority leader of the House of Representatives.

(b)

Deadline for appointment

All members of the Commission should be appointed within 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act.

(c)

Qualifications

(1)

In general

All members of the Commission shall be persons who are especially qualified to serve on the Commission by virtue of their education, training, or experience in the field of foreign policy, national security, military affairs, or East Asian politics.

(2)

Political party affiliation

Not more than three members of the Commission may be members of or affiliated with the same political party.

(d)

Chairperson

The Commission shall select a Chairperson from among its members.

(e)

Vacancies

If a vacancy occurs in the membership of the Commission, it shall be filled in the manner in which the original appointment was made.

5.

Proceedings

(a)

Meetings

The Commission shall hold its first meeting not later than 120 days after the enactment of this Act, and shall meet thereafter at the call of the chairperson or a majority of its members. Three members of the commission shall constitute a quorum.

(b)

Hearings

(1)

In general

The Commission may, for the purposes of carrying out this Act, hold hearings, sit and act at such times and places, request the attendance of witnesses and take testimony from such witnesses, and receive evidence as the Commission considers appropriate.

(2)

Availability to public

The Commission should conduct its hearings in public to the extent that the Commission considers it appropriate.

(c)

Consideration and use of existing studies

In carrying out its duties, the Commission shall consider and use, to the extent it deems appropriate, any studies that have been conducted by other entities on the subjects described in section 3 so as to avoid unnecessary duplication.

6.

Staff

The Commission is authorized to hire staff to assist the Commission in carrying out its duties.

7.

Report

Not later than 1 year after the date of the Commission’s first meeting, the Commission shall submit to Congress a report in writing containing the findings and conclusions of the Commission and agreed to by a majority of the members of the Commission, including any recommendations the Commission finds necessary to improve implementation of United States policy under the Taiwan Relations Act.

8.

Termination

(a)

In general

The Commission, and all of its authorities under this Act, shall terminate 60 days after the date on which the report is submitted to Congress under section 7.

(b)

Conclusion of activities

The Commission may use the 60-day period referred to in subsection (a) for the purpose of concluding its activities, including providing testimony to committees of Congress and disseminating its report to the public.

9.

Authorization of appropriations

There is authorized to be appropriated for fiscal year 2013 $500,000 to carry out this Act.