WASHINGTON — The Senate Finance Committee today approved, 12 to 4, a bill giving President Reagan 90 days to either negotiate increased access for U.S. products in Japan or take action to reduce U.S. imports from that country.
The House Ways and Means Committee, meanwhile, approved a non-binding resolution similar to one unanimously approved by the Senate last week, urging Reagan to restrict imports from Japan unless it opens its markets.
Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.), chairman of the Senate panel, said his committee will try to attach its proposal to some future trade bill coming from the House where, under the rules, such legislation must originate.
The Senate measure is much stronger than the non-binding House resolution. In effect, it would require the President to improve the U.S. trade deficit with Japan by $3.5 billion during the next 12 months. If he could not do so by increasing U.S. exports to Japan, he would be forced to limit Japanese imports.