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Cablegate: Panama: President Torrijos Gripes That U.S.

VZCZCXYZ0028
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHZP #1189 1931411
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 121411Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY PANAMA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0811
INFO RUEHZA/WHA CENTRAL AMERICAN COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA PRIORITY 2604
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA PRIORITY 0700
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC//DHO-5// PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/OSD WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L PANAMA 001189

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR FOR WHA/CEN - TELLO & FOR WHA/EPSC - KUBISKE
ALSO FOR EB/TPP/BTA - LAMPRON
STATE PASS USTR - SCHWAB, VERONEAU, AND EISSENSTAT
USDOC/MAC - GAISFORD

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/13/2017
TAGS: ETRD ECON PM
SUBJECT: PANAMA: PRESIDENT TORRIJOS GRIPES THAT U.S.
CONGRESS MOVING TPA GOALPOSTS

Classified By: Ambassador William A. Eaton - Reasons 1.5(b and d)

1. (C) It would be "unfair and unwise" for the U.S. Congress
to "move the goalposts" before acting on the U.S.-Panama
Trade Promotion Agreement (TPA), President Martin Torrijos
told Ambassador on July 9. He was unhappy with recent
statements from the U.S. Congress indicating that Panama and
Peru had to pass all implementing legislation before the U.S.
Congress would vote on the TPA. He recounted Panama's "good
faith" efforts so far to legislate and implement necessary
changes (such as creating a new, science-based Food Safety
Authority to better manage sanitary & phytosanitary issues)
even before signature of the TPA. Torrijos said the GOP
would do the same if other legislation was required.

2. (C) Torrijos feared that the U.S. Congress' possible
imposition of new pre-conditions for its action on the TPA
could stir up nationalistic fervor in Panama that would be
unhelpful for the TPA. He planned to visit New York City
later in July, where he hoped to meet with House Ways and
Means Chairman Charles Rangel to prevent any "unpleasantness"
during Rangel's August trip to Panama.
Eaton

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