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Lawmaker Pushes Trade Bill

Senior U.S. lawmaker Kevin Brady said Wednesday that House Republican leaders would not schedule action on permanent normal trade relations with Russia until two conditions were met: a firm date for Senate action on the bill and a firm indication of how many House Democrats would vote for the bill.

Congress is set to adjourn this week for a monthlong recess, while Russia is set to formally enter the World Trade Organization on Aug. 22. Congress needs to approve PNTR to ensure that U.S. exporters share in the market-opening concessions that Russia made to join the WTO.

"The sooner we get those two elements solidified, the better," Brady said, adding that it was unclear how many Democrats in the House supported the measure, which Republicans would not be able to pass on their own.


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