NEW YORK (Jul. 1)
An overwhelming majority of American business executives with international responsibilities favor the United States extending to the Communist countries most favored nation treatment (MFN) without regard to their government’s emigration policies, a poll by Business International Corporation revealed today. Of a total of 195 executives, 83 percent opposed attaching any strings to the granting of MFN and 15 percent favored restrictions, while 2 percent had no opinion.
The general attitude of those polled, according to Business International, was that granting MFN is not a favor but rather an undoing of inequities in American trade relations with foreign countries. This trade status would give goods from Communist nations the same tariff treatment generally accorded to “free world” countries. Legislation introduced by Sen. Henry M. Jackson (D.Wash.) would deny MFN treatment to any nation that limits emigration of its citizens.
When asked the probable effects of granting MFN on a company’s exports to Communist nations, 48 percent of the executives felt their exports would rise, 33 percent believed they would not, and 20 percent had no opinion. “This is noteworthy,” according to Business International, “because it indicates that a large proportion of respondents were opposing the Jackson Amendment on grounds of benefit to their companies.”
More than 50 percent of the executives felt that before MFN is granted the Communist nations should agree to mutual tariff reductions, equal treatment in the granting of visas, access to markets and business data, and direct contact with potential buyers. “The important point is that, except for the distinct minority supporting the Jackson Amendment, very few suggested that any strings attached to the granting of MFN be other than purely commercial issues,” said Business International.