Japan Supercomputer Procurement Agreement (1990)
THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE
Executive Office of the President
Washington, D.C. 20506
June 15, 1990
Ambassador of Japan
2520 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D. C.
Dear Ambassador Murata:
I am pleased to receive your letter of today's date concerning the procurement of supercomputers in the public sector, and the revised "Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers" attached thereto. I understand that the revised procedures will govern all procurements of supercomputers by the entities covered by the GATT Agreement on Government Procurement and quasi-governmental agencies, listed in ANNEXES I and II of your letter, that are initiated or ongoing on or after May 1, 1990 .
I welcome your government's decision to review the procedures as events and technology develop, and to keep these procedures under continual review. In this regard, we are also prepared to review annually and discuss with your government the implementation of these procedures in order to assure their continued effectiveness in providing transparent and nondiscriminatory government procurement of supercomputers. We would like to plan on the first such review in June, 1991.
We welcome your government's request for funds in the JFY 1990 budget sufficient to enable public procurement of supercomputers at prices based on those for similar supercomputer systems in similar working environments in the private sector. We also appreciate your government's decision to, as a matter of policy, make maximum efforts to obtain such funds in accordance with the revised Procedures in JFY 1991 and in the future.
These procedures represent substantial progress toward successful resolution of a long-standing problem between our two countries. I hope that these developments will give United States supercomputer manufacturers full and effective access to the public procurement market in Japan. We will continue to monitor this situation, and look forward to the first sales by U.S. firms under the revised Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers.
In this regard, I am pleased to reconfirm that it is the policy of the Government of the United States to provide competitive and non-discriminatory market opportunities in the United States consistent with our obligations under the GATT Government Procurement Code. This policy maintains the openness and transparency of the U. S. market for government procurement of supercomputers without regard to the nationality of the manufacturers. We are also prepared to provide the Government of Japan with necessary information upon request concerning our procurements.
Carla A. Hills
EMBASSY OF JAPAN
WASHINGTON, D. C.
June 15, 1990
Dear Ambassador Hills:
With regard to supercomputer procurement, I am pleased to inform you of the following.
The Government of Japan has decided to revise the "Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers", implemented in August 1987, in order to provide further transparency and ensure non-discriminatory, competitive opportunities for the introduction of supercomputers in the public sector. The text of these revised procedures is attached. The revised procedures will govern all procurements of supercomputers by the entities covered by the GATT Agreement on Government Procurement and quasi-governmental agencies listed in ANNEXES I and II that are initiated or ongoing on or after May 1, 1990.
The Government of Japan also recognizes that adequate budgets for supercomputers are necessary to ensure fair and competitive procurements. To this end, my government has requested in the JFY 1990 budget sufficient funds to enable public procurement of supercomputers based on prices for similar supercomputer systems in similar working environments in the private sector, and will, as a matter of policy, make maximum efforts to obtain such funds in accordance with the revised Procedures in JFY 1991 and in the future.
Because the supercomputer market is dynamic, it will be necessary to review the procedures as events and technology develop. Accordingly, my government will keep these procedures under continual review. In this regard, we are prepared to review and discuss with your government annually or at any time upon request the implementation of these procedures in order to ensure a non-discriminatory, transparent, and competitive marketplace for the introduction of supercomputers. If necessary to ensure such a market place, we will implement appropriate revisions of these procedures.
Ambassador of Japan
The Honorable Carla A. Hills
United States Trade Representative
Office of the U.S.T.R.
Washington, D.C. 20506
Attachment: Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers
Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers
It is the policy of the Government to provide transparent, open and non-discriminatory competitive procedures for the introduction of supercomputers and to ensure that a procuring entity procures the supercomputer that best enables it to perform its mission. The following procedures are adopted in order to implement that policy fully and effectively. The procedures specified herein are intended to address the changes in the procurement environment identified to date.
A competitive procedure will mean there is no tendency, whether intentional or unintentional, for any company domestic or foreign to be favored, hindered, or blocked in its ability to supply a machine which meets the information processing needs of prospective users. It is not the policy of the Government to procure supercomputers based on bids that contravene the prohibition in the Anti-Monopoly Act against unjust low-priced sales. These procedures go into effect as from May 1, 1990.
These procedures will be implemented while ensuring consistency with the requirements of the GATT Government Procurement Code, as amended (hereinafter referred to as "the Code").
I. Scope and coverage
1. These procedures govern the introduction (purchase, rental and lease) of supercomputers by the entities subject to the Code.
2. Each ministry/agency concerned will give guidance to quasi-governmental agencies within its jurisdiction which are planning to introduce supercomputers to follow procedures in line with the purport of these procedures.
3. These procedures will apply to the introduction of supercomputers with theoretical peak ratings of 300 million floating point operations per second (FLOPS) and over. This coverage will be reviewed as necessary1. [Note: Coverage threshold raised to 50 TFLOPS on April 1, 2014]
Procedures stipulated by the Code and the Action Program for Improved Market Access will be followed for all supercomputer procurements. Under the principles of free competition, all procedures will be conducted in a manner which ensures national treatment and nondiscrimination. From this viewpoint, an entity which hereafter plans to introduce a supercomputer (hereinafter referred to as "the entity") will follow the Procedures outlined below with a view to supplementing the Code procedures and precisely implementing its principles.
1. Procedure for market research
1.1 Invitation to submit material
(1) When an entity has determined that it has needs which may be satisfied by the introduction of a supercomputer, it will draw up its actual minimum needs, including parameters of forecasted workloads based on anticipated use. These parameters will include minimally acceptable benchmark results which demonstrate the operational performance of the supercomputer required by the entity. The parameters may also include such requirements as main and secondary memory size. Where a specific rate of operational performance is required within a fixed period of time, that rate may be included in actual needs; however, it will be set in such a manner as not to discourage potential suppliers.
(2) The entity will conduct market research for the purpose of ensuring the development of actual minimum meeds. The entity will collect information on actual market prices for supercomputer systems in similar working environments in the private sector, unless impossible. This research will be conducted in a transparent manner and will serve as the basis for establishing the estimated contract price and requesting a budget sufficient for introduction of the system.
(3) In requesting information from a supplier, the entity will not provide or deny information in such a manner as would give any supplier a discriminatory advantage. The entity will not provide advance knowledge concerning a future plan to introduce a supercomputer to any prospective supplier, except according to procedures described in (4) below. Suppliers who are directly involved in the development of the actual needs shall be barred from participating in the tendering process.
(4) The entity will make an announcement in the Kanpo (hereinafter referred to as "the announcement") of its plan to introduce a supercomputer in accordance with the actual minimum needs developed in (1) above, and issue an invitation to suppliers for submission of general information material and comments on the basic need requirements (including specifications and other technical information). Simultaneously, supplementing this, the entity will send an invitation letter (hereinafter referred to as "the letter") to those domestic and foreign suppliers of which it has knowledge, including those that have expressed an interest in supplying supercomputers. Equal treatment shall be accorded to those suppliers responding to the announcement and those responding to the invitation letter.
(5) The announcement and the invitation letter mentioned above will be given or sent at least 40 calendar days prior to the last day of the period set for receiving submission of the said material and comments from suppliers.
(6) The announcement and the invitation letter will contain the following:
(a) the plan to introduce a supercomputer and actual minimum needs thereof;
(b) the date for submission of material and comments;
(c) notice that the introduction documentation will be sent, upon request, to suppliers responding to the announcement or the invitation letter as well as the place where and the period when suppliers can obtain the introduction documentation; and
(d) notice of an explanation session for the introduction of a supercomputer, if held.
1.2 Introduction documentation
(1) Suppliers responding to the announcement or the invitation letter will be, upon request, provided with the relevant introduction documentation by the entity.
(2) The introduction documentation will contain, inter alia, the following:
(a) the place where suppliers' material must be submitted (contact points);
(b) the place where suppliers' inquiries will be received or additional information can be obtained;
(c) the deadline for submission of material;
(d) detailed requirements of the supercomputer planned to be introduced (required performance, type of operation and others);
(e) benchmark materials covering representative forecasted workloads of the entity;
(f) the date and place of the explanation session for the introduction of a supercomputer, if held; and
(g) the objective criteria for evaluating each mandatory requirement and for evaluating the technical excellence of the bids.
1.3 Explanation session for the introduction of a supercomputer The entity will hold, as necessary, an explanation session with regard to the introduction documentation. In case the date and place is not contained in the introduction documentation, it will send an invitation to all suppliers responding to the announcement or the invitation letter, while allowing sufficient time for suppliers to consider the information.
(1) The entity will promptly respond to inquiries made by suppliers with respect to the content of the announcement, invitation letter or introduction documentation.
(2) When the entity makes any amendment to or has any additional information concerning the introduction documentation, it will simultaneously provide the amendment or additional information to all interested supplier responding to the announcement or the invitation letter and allow sufficient time for suppliers to submit additional material so that they can consider and respond to such amendment or information.
(3) The entity may ask questions or make inquiries to suppliers with regard to submitted material, but will not do so in a manner that provides a discriminatory advantage to any supplier. The entity may also, as necessary, contact research including performance and function verification with respect to submitted material
(4) The entity will not disclose or divulge material or information provided by a supplier without its consent to any third party, including other supplies.
1.5 Benchmark testing
(1) Benchmark: testing definition: For the purposes of these Procedures, benchmark testing is defined as 'The measurement of achieved performance of a supercomputer on a representativeforecasted workload (set of codes), designated by the customer, and as measured by the elapsed time on the wall clock, as utilized in the United States".
(2) Benchmark testing will be conducted in every procurement in accordance with the following provisions:
(a) The procuring entity will specify the operational performance of the supercomputer that will eds, as specified in Section II 1.1(1), "Invitation to submit material".
(b) The entity will supply all necessary documentation for benchmarks as set forth in Section IL 1.2 (e), "Introduction documentation".
(c) The selection of benchmarks will be representative of the anticipated workload of the entity, as described in Section II 2.1 (2), "Preparation of specifications".
(d) 'The results of benchmark tests conducted in accordance with Section II. 3.S (2), "Technical examination", will be submitted with the bid.
(e) The entity may conduct benchmark testing subsequent to awarding a bid to verify previously submitted benchmark results.
2.1 Preparation of specifications
(1) The entity will prepare technical specifications based on the actual minimum needs it identified during the market research phase. If the procurement will replace or interconnect with an existing system, these specifications will be prepared in such a way that suppliers can compete effectively against the incumbent supplier. Features not essential to the assigned operational tasks will not be required.
(2) Benchmarking tests based on a representative forecasted workload of a procuring entity will be specified in final form in the solicitation so that functional performance is used as the basis of the supercomputers technical evaluation. The entity will provide all the information necessary for the supplier to prepare and execute the specific benchmark tests. Operating system and other software capabilities essential to the system's performance will be listed in the specifications.
3) Overall systems performance will be emphasized over equipment specifications so that bidders can concentrate on satisfying actual user needs. Operational performance, as described in Section II 1.1(1), may be used in the specifications to describe the entity's general concept of the capability of the supercomputer to be procured.
(4) Specifications will contain all the information necessary for the potential suppliers to understand the entity's actual minimum needs. Suppliers who are directly involved in the actual development of specifications will be barred from participating in the tendering process.
2.2 Explanation of Specifications
(1) The entity will send an invitation to all the suppliers responding to the announcement or the invitation letter and explain to them its specifications developed under Section 11.2.1. If the entity plans to use single tendering procedures based on compatibility requirements, Code justifications will be included.
(2) If the entity requires interoperability with existing hardware and/or software, it will accomplish this objective in a manner that does not entail involuntary or unauthorized disclosure of proprietary operating systems, interfaces or protocols.
2.3 Inquiries and proposals
The entity will give suppliers at least 50 calendar days after the above explanation thereby providing opportunities for the entity and suppliers to make inquiries, and for suppliers to submit proposals and revise their proposals concerning the specifications.
3. Tendering procedures
In the procurement of a supercomputer the entity will follow the procedures set forth in the following sections.
3.1 Basic procedures
Procedures stipulated by the Code and the Action Program for Improved Market Access will be followed.
Procedures stipulated by the Code covering rental-lease will be followed.
3.2 Bid deadlines and provision of information
(1) The entity will, when procuring a supercomputer by competitive tendering procedures, ensure that the period for receipt of tenders be at least 40 calendar days from the date of issuance of the invitation to tender.
(2) The entity will when procuring a supercomputer by single tendering procedures based on the compatibility requirements, provide in the Kanpo information concerning the procurement plan together with the compatibility requirements at least 40 calendar days prior to the conclusion of the contract and after the period mentioned in Section II. 2.3 The entity will promptly provide related information to suppliers who make inquiries to it based on the information in the Kanpo.
3.3 Finalization of specifications
After any inquiries and/or proposals regarding the solicitation have been made, and all parties have been informed of any changes, as presented in Sections II 1.4 and 2.3 above, the entity will finalize its specifications and provide them to the interested bidders.
3.4 Bidding procedures
(1) Bids will be evaluated based on overall greatest value to the entity which is determined by considering technical and functional performance factors as well as price. The specific criteria for evaluation of a procurement are specified in Section II. 3.7.
(2) The procuring entity will establish the estimated contract price for the introduction of a supercomputer based on the prices for similar supercomputer systems in similar working environments in the private sector, unless impossible.
(3) When one or more bids are offered at a price equal to or less than the estimated contract price established by the procuring entity and meet the minimum functional performance thresholds established by the procuring entity, additional rounds of bidding will be expressly prohibited. Thresholds for functional performance are established in Section II 2.1. The established contract price, which will reflect an adequate budget, will be decided in accordance with (2) above.
(4) The procuring entity will not require additional bidding rounds when only one supplier is participating, once that supplier meets functional performance requirements established in Section II. 2. 1 and has offered a price that is equal to or less than the estimated contract price that has been established in accordance with (2) above for the introduction of a supercomputer.
3.5 Explanation session
The entity will hold, as necessary, an explanation session with respect to the final specifications and requirements. In such a case, identical information will be provided to all suppliers wishing to participate in the tendering.
3.6 Technical Examination
(1) Benchmarking: The entity will conduct the previously determined and specified benchmark testing of a representative workload. For purposes of technical evaluation, entities will use solely those benchmarks described in the specifications. The selection of benchmarks will be based on the anticipated workload of the entity as stated in Section II 1.1. The entity will give each bidder adequate advanced notice before benchmark tests are run on its system. The only criteria to be used in performance testing will be those specified in Section II 2. The tests will not be run under such conditions and terms as would give any supplier a discriminatory advantage.
(2) Benchmark testing will be conducted on an existing system in every procurement except in procurements that meet the following conditions:
(a) a supplier offers the first of a new model machine that the supplier may not yet be able to benchmark;
(b) if a supplier meets the requirements of (a) above, the other suppliers in that procurement will be allowed to offer a future model that the suppliers may not yet be able to benchmark.
(c) the supplier with the winning bid must deliver the machine by the announced delivery date or the entire procurement will be subject to rebidding; and
(d) the winning system must, before delivery, satisfy the benchmark tests with results equal to or better than the forecasted results and the specifications.
(3) The entity will show the results of the benchmark testing and the verification upon request from any other bidder after the system is delivered.
(4) The bidder may file a complaint with respect to the benchmark testing and its results with the Procurement Review Board.
3.7 Award Criteria
(1) The overall evaluation of bids will be conducted in a manner that ensures equal treatment of all bidders and full transparency. In the overall evaluation of bids, the procuring entity will consider technical excellence, with overall system performance being of fundamental importance, and cost. To be eligible for contract award, the proposals must be within the estimated contract price determined in accordance with Section II 3.4 (2) and meet the mandatory requirements set forth in the specifications in Sections II. 2 and 3.3.
(2) The entity will specify the mandatory and other requirements for the supercomputer system which it needs to procure. The criteria for evaluating each mandatory requirement will be on a pass/fail basis and will be specified in the introduction documentation in Section II 1.2(2) (g) and final specifications in Section 2. 3.3. Only those proposals which pass all mandatory requirements will be further considered.
(3) The procuring entity will also specify the objective criteria for evaluating the technical excellence of the bids in the introduction documentation in Section II. 1.2(2) (g) and in the final specifications in Section IL 3.3. The objective criteria will reflect the scoring system for each technical factor, including those mandatory requirements which can be exceeded for extra credit. Also, when extra credit is given under a particular technical factor for providing a non-mandatory requirement, this will be included as part of the objective criteria. No credit will be given for providing features not included in the final specifications. Bidders may propose changes to any part of the evaluation criteria during the inquiry stage. The overall evaluation of the technical proposal will be measured by aggregating the score for each technical factor.
(4) Software availability will be taken into consideration.
(5) The entity will determine the award of the contract by analyzing the technical as well as the cost factors on the basis of the most favorable proposal to the procurer.
3.8 Final contract price
The final contract price will be decided in accordance with the award criteria set forth in Section II. 3.7.
3.9 Unfair bids
(1) It is not the policy of the Government to procure supercomputers based on bids that contravene the Anti-Monopoly Act, including the prohibition against unjust low-priced sales.
(2) Where a bid is submitted that, because of its price or other terms, unlawfully impedes fair competition, the bid will be deemed void in its entirety and the procuring entity will not consider that bid in awarding the supercomputer contract.
(3) Any bidder that submits a bid referred to in (2) above will, as a matter of principle, be deemed ineligible to resubmit a bid in that supercomputer procurement; and the name of such bidder will be announced publicly.
(4) If, after a contract is awarded, a complaint is filed pursuant to Section III and the FTC or the Court determines that the bid upon which the award was based unlawfully impeded fair competition, the procuring entity will take the most appropriate action as set forth in Section II. III 4.4.
4. Post-awarded information and debriefing of the outcome of the procurement Consistent with the requirtments of Article VI of the Code, the entity will publish information on the contract award and, upon request from an unsuccessful supplier who has submitted material, promptly provide such supplier with pertinent information concerning the reasons for not being selected including the name of the elected system as well as the information on its relative advantages. The information may, however, exclude such as would prejudice the legitimate commercial interests of particular suppliers or might prejudice fair competition among suppliers.
Complaint Mechanism for Supercomputcr Procurements
In order to provide for fair and open competition and to achieve consistency with the provisions of these Procedures in procurements of supercomputers, the following complaint process will be effective 30 days after these Procedures go into effect.
2. Procurement Review Board
2.1 The Government will establish a Procurement Review Board (Board), as an independent reviewing organ, to review complaints by potential suppliers of any aspect of a procurement of a supercomputer subject to these Procedures. The Board will have no substantial interest in the outcome of a supercomputer procurement subject to its review.
2.2 The Board will receive complaints in writing, conduct investigations of the facts and make recommendations with respect to any aspect of a procurement of a supercomputer by an entity.
2.3 The Board will be composed of persons who have knowledge and experience related to public sector procurements. No member of the Board will participate in the review of a complaint in which that member has a conflict of interest.
3. Procurement Review Process
3.1 A potential supplier may file a complaint with the Board when it believes the procurement has been carried out in a manner inconsistent with the intent or any provision of these Procedures. It may also file a complaint based upon the allegation that the contract was awarded to a supplier that had submitted a bid violation of the Anti-Monopoly Act. Potential suppliers are encouraged to seek resolution initially with the entity of any alleged inconsistency with these Procedures.
3.2 Timing of complaints
(1) A complaint may be filed at any time during the procurement process, but no later than 10 days after the basis of the complaint is known or reasonably should have been known. The potential supplier will submit a copy of the complaint to the entity within one day of filing it with the Board.
(2) The Board may consider a complaint, even though not timely filed, if it finds that good cause is shown or that a complaint raises issues significant to the purpose of these procedures.
3.3 The Board will review a complaint within seven days of its filing2 and may, in writing and with good reasons given, dismiss any complaint found to be:
(1 ) not submitted in a timely manner,
(2) not subject to these Procedures.
(3) frivolous or trivial on its face,
(4) not submitted by a potential supplier, or
(5) otherwise inappropriate for review by the Board
3.4 Where the Board determines that a complaint has been filed properly, it will notify in writing >all potential suppliers within one working day of the complaint.
3.5 Suspension of award or procurement process
(1) Within 10 days of the filing of a pre-award complaint2, the Board will issue written requests for suspension of the procurement process pending resolution of the complaint.
(2) Within 10 days of the filing of a post-award complaint the Board will request in writing suspension of performance of the contract pending resolution of the complaint.
(3) The entity will, as a matter of principle, suspend the procurement process or performance of the contract immediately after it receives the Board's request, unless the head of the entity determines that urgent and compelling circumstances do not allow the entity to follow the request, in which case he will immediately inform the Board of his determination.
(1) The Board will conduct an investigation of the complaint, which may include the filing of briefs, pleadings and other documentation by the complaintant and entity.
(2) The Board may, on the request of the complainant or entity or on the Board's own initiative, hold a hearing on the merits of a complaint.
3.7 Entity Report
(1) Within 25 days after the day on which a copy of the complaint was sent to the entity, it will file with the Board a complete written report on the complaint, containing the following:
(a) the solicitation, including the specifications or portions thereof relevant to the complaint;
(b) all other documents relevant to the complaint;
(c) a statement that sets out all findings, actions and recommendations of the entity and responds fully to all allegations of the complaint; and
(d) any additional evidence or information that may be necessary in order to resolve the complaint.
(2) The Board will forthwith after receiving the report referred to in (1) above, send a copy of the relevant material to the complainant and give the complainant an opportunity, within seven days after it receives the relevant material, to file with the Board comments or request that the case be decided on the existing record. The Board will, forthwith after receiving the comments, send a copy to the entity.
3.8 Participants: The entity and potential suppliers whose direct economic interest would be affected by the award of, or the failure to award, a contract may participate in a complaint proceeding.
4. Findings and recommendations
4.1 The Board will make a report of its findings and recommendations within 90 days after the day on which the complaint is filed. Its findings, in which the Board will grant or deny the complaint in whole or in part, will specify whether the procurement process or award was inconsistent with the intent or specific provisions of these Procedures.
4.2 (1) Where the Board finds that there is a significant likelihood that a contract was awarded to a supplier that had submitted a bid that contravened the prohibition in the Anti-Monopoly Act against unjust low-priced sales, it will report the case to, and request that, the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) determine whether or not the Anti-Monopoly Act has been violated and take appropriate measures.
(2) Pending the notification by the FTC of its final findings, the Board will request the entity to suspend performance of the contract. With this request, the entity, as a matter of principle, will suspend performance of the contract. Upon receipt of the FTC's notification, the Board will complete its review of the complaint and where the FTC has found a violation of the Anti-Monopoly Act, the Board will recommend that the entity adopt a remedy set forth in Section III. 4.4.
4.3 In making its findings and recommendations, the Board will consider all the circumstances surrounding the procurement process or award, including the seriousness of the deficiency in the procurement process, the degree of prejudice to all potential suppliers or to the integrity and effectiveness of these Procedures, the good faith of the participants and the extent of performance of the contract to which the procurement relates.
4.4 Where the Board finds that the intent or any provision of these Procedures has not been realized, it may recommend an appropriate remedy, including one or more of the following:
(1) that a new tender package be issued,
(2) that new bids for the contract be sought,
(3) that the bids be re-evaluated,
(4) that the contract be awarded to another supplier, or
(5) that the contract be terminated.
4.5 The Board will send its findings in writing with its recommendations to the complainant, the entity, and any other potential suppliers, within one working day after issuance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will respond to external inquires concerning the findings.
4.6 Where the entity does not follow the Board's recommendations, the entity will send a copy of its decision, and the rationale for it, to the Board within one working day after issuance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will respond to external inquires concerning the decision.
4.7 Whenever the Board discovers evidence of misconduct, or behavior contrary to law or regulation, such evidence will be referred to law enforcement authorities for appropriate action.
5. Express Option
5.1 Where the complainant or entity requests in writing an expeditious handling of a complaint, the Board will consider the feasibility of using the procedure set out in this section, referred to herein as the "express option".
5.2 The Board will determine whether to apply the express option within two working days after receiving a request therefor and will notify the complainant and entity as to whether the express option is to be applied.
5.3 Where the express option is applied, the time limits and procedures will be as follows:
(1) The entity will, within 10 days after the day on which it is notified by the Board that the express option is to be applied, file with the Board a complete report on the complaint, as specified in Section III. 3.7. The Board will, forthwith after receiving the report, sent a copy of the relevant material to the complainant. The Board will give the complainant five days to file with the Board comments on such material or request that the case be decided on the existing record. The Board will forthwith after receiving the comments, send a copy to the entity.
(2) The Board will issue its findings and recommendations on the complaint in writing 45 days after the day on which the complaint is filed.
EMBASSY OF JAPAN
2520 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, N.W.
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20008
(202) 939 6700
July 23, 1990
Ms. Holly Hammonds
Associate General Counsel
Office of the U.S.T.R.
Washington, D. C. 20506
Dear Ms. Hammonds:
Concerning the letter from Ambassador Murata to Ambassador Hills dated June 15, 1990 on Supercomputer Procurement, I would like to inform you, upon the instruction of my home government, of the following:
1 With regard to Annexes I and II of the Attachment to the said letter, the following corrections are now made:
(1) East Japan Railway Company now added to Annex I after Hokkaido Railway Company
(2) Japan Arts Fund referred to in Annex II under the heading of Ministry of Education now deleted
(3) National Theater of Japan referred to in Annex II under the same heading, now incorporated to Japan Arts Council
(4) University of the Air referred to in Annex II under the same heading, now changed to University of the Air Foundation
(5) National Stadium and School Health Center referred to in Annex II under the same heading, now changed to National Stadium and School Health Center of Japan
(6) School Welfare and Medical Service Corporation referred to in Annex II under the heading of Ministry of Health and Welfare, now changed to Social Welfare and Medical Service Corporation
(7) Mutual Aid Associations of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery Corporation Personnel, now added after Japan Regional Public Racing Association to Annex II under the heading of Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
(8) Forestry Credit Fund Corporation, referred to in Annex II under the heading of Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries now deleted
(9) University of the Air referred to in Annex II under the heading of Ministry of Posts & Post Telecommunications, now changed to University of the Air Foundation
(10) Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Authority, now added after Hanshin Expressway Public Corporation under the heading of Ministry of Construction
2 Explanations are given with respect to changes (apart from typographical errors) to Annex II from that of the 1987 Arrangement:
(1) National Theater of Japan it now deleted because it was subsumed in March, 1990 into the apan Arts Council which is listed in the Annex
(2) Addition of Foundation to University of the Air is made due to the change of the formal English name
(3) Likewise, addition of "of Japan" to National Stadium and School Health Center is made due to the change of the formal English name
(4) The deletion of Forestry Credit Fund Corporation is made because that corporation was subsumed in October, 1987 into the Agriculture, Forestry, Fishery and Finance Corporation which is listed in the Annex
(5) The deletion of Okinawa Electric Power Co. Ltd. is made because that company was completely privatized in October, 1988
(6) Addition of "and Industrial Technology" to New Energy Development Organization is made due to the change of the formal English name
(7) Likewise, the addition of "and Prevention" to Pollution Related Health Damage Compensation Association was made due to the change of the formal English name
(8) Addition of "The Environmental Pollution Control Service Corporation" under the heading Ministry of International Trade and Industry was made because that corporation has become subject to the joint jurisdiction of the Environmental Agency and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry since October, 1987
(9) Japan Airlines Co. Ltd. is now deleted because that company was completely privatized in November, 1987 following the abolition of the Japan Air Line Act. The Government sold its holding stocks in December, 1987 and it holds no stocks I am attaching the corrected versions of Annexes I and II to this letter.
Shinsuke J. Sugiyama
[Not included. This Annex is Japan's standard list of entities subject to the GATT Procurement Code.]
1 In March 2000 and subsequently in March 2005 and in March 2014, the Governments of Japan
and the United States-in order to reflect technological advances in the supercomputer
market-raised coverage thresholds for procurement of supercomputers in the public
On March 31, 2000, the parties agreed to raise the coverage threshold to 100 GFLOPS.
On March 30, 2005, the parties agreed to raise the coverage threshold to 1.5 TFLOPS.
On March 26, 2014, the parties agreed to raise the coverage threshold to 50 TFLOPS.
On December 18, 2019, the parties agreed to raise the coverage threshold to 2 PFLOPS.
View March 2000 Exchange of Letters on Supercomputer Thresholds
View March 2005 Exchange of Letters on Supercomputer Thresholds
View March 2014 Exchange of Letters on Supercomputer Thresholds
View December 2019 Exchange of Letters on Supercomputer Thresholds
2 In an April 16, 2014 exchange of letters, the United States and Japan described modifications to Section IV of Japan’s Procedures for the Procurement of Non-R&D Satellites, Section III of Japan’s Procedures to Introduce Supercomputers, and Annex III of Japan’s Measures related to Japanese Public Sector Procurements of Computer Products and Services. For procurements of non-R&D satellites, supercomputers, and computer products and services subject to these Procedures and Measures, the amount of time given to the Procurement Review Board (Board) to review a complaint in paragraph 3.3 was expanded from “seven days” to “10 working days” of its filing. In addition, for procurements subject to these Procedures and Measures, the amount of time the Board may take to issue a written request for the suspension of the procurement process pending resolution of the complaint in paragraphs 3.5.1 or 3.5(1) respectively was expanded from “10 days” to “12 working days.”
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