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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release August 3, 1996


Today I am pleased to sign into law H.R. 3161, authorizing the termination of the application of title IV of the Trade Act of 1974 to Romania. Under the provisions of this bill, the President may grant permanent most-favored-nation (MFN) status to Romania.

This is an important milestone in U.S.-Romanian relations. Romania now joins other emerging democracies in Central Europe from which the United States has fully removed trade restrictions that originated in concerns about emigration practices during the Cold War. My approval of this bill reflects the strong U.S. support for the citizens of Romania in their efforts to overcome the legacy of decades of communist repression and to establish a full democracy based on respect for human rights, the rule of law, tolerance, and free market economics.

This legislation enjoys strong bipartisan support in the United States, and I note that the granting of permanent MFN has the support of many Romanian leaders across the political spectrum.

Romania's excellent record in respecting the right of free emigration, its considerable progress in establishing the fundamentals of a free market democracy and its strong cooperation with the United States helped facilitate passage of this bill. I am confident that Romania, as it proceeds toward integration with the Western democratic community, will continue its progress and intensify efforts to make democratic, free market reforms, develope good relations with its democratic neighbors and reach out to Romania's ethnic and religious minorities.



August 3, 1996.

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