WASHINGTON (Dec. 3)
U.S. trade policies and Middle East issues will top the agenda of talks between President Nixon and Rumanian President Nicolae Ceausescu who, with his wife, make a four day official visit to Washington beginning today. Another prime topic is understood to be Rumania’s petroleum exports to the United States. They now run about 200.000 tons a year but U.S. importers believe it could rise to 700.000 tons if Rumania were paid prices equivalent to what Western Europe is paying for it.
Ceausescu was represented here today by State Department sources as being anxious to gain most favored nation trade treatment from the United States. However, since U.S.-Rumanian trade this year is double last year’s and is more than nine times as great as in 1968 the MFN factor involving the ‘Jackson/Mills-Vanik legislation is considered by some proponents as much less serious than the Administration seeks to picture it.
The U.S. has a slight advantage in the current year’s trade which is going above $200 million. In 1968 it was only $22 million. Last year trade totaled about $100 million. The JMV proponents in the House also point out that Rumania could be granted MFN immediately under the provisions of the JMV legislation, a Congressional source close to it pointed out to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. “There is no problem with Rumania,” he said.