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GAO discussed its report on the Trade Act of 1974, focusing on the act's provisions for remedying unfair foreign trade practices. GAO noted that: (1) unfair trade cases handled through bilateral negotiation were generally resolved much faster than cases handled through the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT); (2) many of those who petitioned for relief under the act expressed dissatisfaction with the act's and GATT relief provisions; (3) many petitioners advocated stricter time frames for dispute settlement; (4) two-thirds of the petitioners felt that the resolution of their case did not eliminate the alleged trade injury; and (5) one-third of the petitioners felt that the remedy in their case left the injury either unchanged or more severe. GAO believes that Congress should amend the act to require the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to set a date for each trade case involving GATT, at which time the United States would withdraw from the GATT settlement process if the case remained unresolved.

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