A major controversy was the treatment of three working provisions in the agreement. Proponents of the work have argued that they are a step backwards from the bilaterally agreed provisions in the United States and Jordan, as well as the Generalized System of Preferences and the Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act, which currently governs much of U.S. trade with Latin America. In particular, the provisions: 1) the effective application of national labour law, 2) the reaffirmation of obligations to the ILO`s fundamental principles and 3) will oblige the parties to strive to treat the “non-exception” of national standards differently (without weakening or reducing protection to promote trade and investment). (27) Developing countries, including Chile, have expressed two fundamental concerns about the integration of environmental and labour provisions into trade agreements: 1) that their sovereignty could be compromised if these agreements approved higher standards; and 2) that such provisions can be used to justify disguised protectionism. Proponents of free trade in the United States and other developed countries have expressed similar sentiments regarding the inclusion of environmental and labour provisions in trade agreements. On July 10, 2003, the House judiciary committee held a “Mock” mark-up of the USTR project. The president, Mr. Sensenbrenner, took the lead in declaring that “immigration policy has no place in free trade agreements,” citing Congressional authority over immigration policy in Article 1, point 8 of the U.S.
Constitution. MPs on both sides of the gang agreed with the president`s position, Mr Sensenbrenner, and several MPs added that the language bill was an “insult to Congress.” The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee recommended including free trade forces in the H-1B visa for non-immigrants and counting a free trade worker against the H-1B cap in the first year he will enter and after the fifth year of extension. These recommendations are reflected in the legislation introduced and adopted. 32. (return) It should also be noted that, according to the main labour negotiating objectives, the provision is: 1) “recognize that parties to a trade agreement retain the right to exercise discretion in the consideration and continuation of compliance issues”; 2) that “a country effectively enforces its legislation” when it reflects appropriate measures; and 3) “no retaliation may be permitted on the basis of the exercise of these rights or the right to establish national labour standards.” Article 2102 (b) (11) (B). Others are concerned that the USTR has exceeded its bargaining power by incorporating immigration provisions into free trade agreements. Critics argue that the USTR`s assertion that the temporary entry of foreign economic and professional staff is not an immigration policy is dishonest. More generally, some point out that these provisions would limit current and future congresses if they consider revising the immigration law for corporate staff, contract investors, internal transfers and professionals, as the United States could violate the free trade agreement.