U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service:

Comments on Proposed Transfer to the Department of State

T-GGD-95-141: Published: Mar 21, 1995. Publicly Released: Mar 21, 1995.

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GAO discussed the proposal to abolish the Department of Commerce's United States and Foreign Commercial Service (US&FCS) and return primary responsibility for overseas commercial activities to the Department of State. GAO noted that: (1) the primary responsibility for overseas commercial activities was transferred from State to Commerce in 1980; (2) Commerce's initial experience with managing US&FCS was problematic because Commerce did not have the management systems necessary to operate its worldwide network of officers; and (3) the merits of transferring export promotion activities to State should be considered given the current emphasis on developing export markets and monitoring foreign government compliance with trade agreements.

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