Message From the President to the Senate: Treaty with the Republic of Panama (9/12/00)
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release                          September 12, 2000


     With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the Senate to
ratification, I transmit herewith the Protocol Between the Government of
the United States of America and the Government of the Republic of Panama
Amending the Treaty Concerning the Treatment and Protection of Investments
of October 27, 1982.  This Protocol was signed at Panama City, on June 1,
2000.  I transmit also, for the information of the Senate, the report of
the Department of State with respect to this Protocol.

     The 1982 bilateral investment treaty with Panama (the "1982 Treaty")
was the second treaty to be signed under the U.S. bilateral investment
treaty (BIT) program.  The 1982 Treaty protects U.S. investment and assists
Panama in its efforts to develop its economy by creating conditions more
favorable for U.S. private investment and thereby strengthening the
development of its private sector.

     As explained in the Department of State's report, the Protocol is
needed in order to ensure that investors continue to have access to binding
international arbitration following Panama's 1996 accession to the
Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes Between States and
Nationals of Other States, done at Washington, March 18, 1965 (the "ICSID
Convention").  The Protocol provides each Party's consent to international
arbitration of investment disputes under the 1982 Treaty before the
International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, established
under the ICSID Convention.  The Protocol also provides for arbitration in
accordance with the Arbitration Rules of the United Nations Commission on
International Trade Law.  The Protocol thus facilitates the use of such
procedures by investors of the Parties to resolve investment disputes under
the 1982 Treaty.  The Protocol also sets forth each Party's consent to
ICSID Additional Facility arbitration, if Convention
Arbitration is not available.  Convention Arbitration would not be
available, for example, if either Party subsequently ceased to be a party
to the ICSID Convention.

     I recommend that the Senate consider this Protocol as soon as
possible, and give its advice and consent to ratification of the Protocol
at an early date.

                              WILLIAM J. CLINTON

  September 12, 2000.

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