Trans-Pacific Partnership talks collapse after Canada pulls out of trade deal

Alicia Farmer
November 14, 2017

"Maybe it will be not everything that was agreed on the TPP-12, but it can be for them to be able to start with something, and then hopefully, later on, the United States will come in again", Tan Sri Rastam said. The TPP discussions in Vietnam centered around suspending some parts of the agreement in a bid to move forward without America's involvement.

Since the withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership within three days of President Trump's inauguration, which many thought would result in a fatal blow to the deal, negotiators from the remaining TPP-11 have been quietly meeting to revive the agreement.

There are effectively four remaining issues of concern to Canada to be resolved, Mr Ciobo said.

So, as it stands 10 countries - Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam - agreed on core elements of pact newly named "Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership", or CPTPP, according to an official statement released Saturday.

Trudeau said his unexpected absence from a TPP leaders' meeting on Friday, which caused consternation among his fellow leaders and confusion about Canada's stance, stemmed from an extra-long meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he was not going to be hurried into a trade deal for the sake of agreement.

Canada's interest in becoming a party to TPP-11 is also said to be contingent on several additional improvements including in relation to the auto sector (in view of the fact that US content may not count in the determination of TPP-11 origin requirements, with the USA being outside of the TPP), intellectual property rules, protection of supply management in certain agricultural sectors and Canada's cultural industries. "That is what I've been saying at least for a week, and I've been saying it around TPP12 for years now, and that position continues to hold", Trudeau tells CBS Radio-Canada.

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"We were not ready to close the TPP 11 yesterday", he said.

Aspects of the trade pact have raised hackles also over a requirement that companies be allowed to sue governments for lack of enforcement of related laws.

It said that the ministers maintained "the high standards, overall balance and integrity of the TPP while ensuring the commercial and other interests of all participants and preserving our inherent right to regulate, including the flexibility of the parties to set legislative and regulatory priorities".

Trump has said he prefers country-to-country deals and is seeking to renegotiate several major trade agreements to, as he says, "put America first".

Increasingly, APEC summits have become more of an opportunity for such side talks, and for host nations to showcase their growing affluence.

In contrast, the Chinese president, Xi Jinping spoke directly and stressed on how "openness brings progress". Danang, Vietnam's third largest city, is in the midst of a construction boom as dozens of resorts and smaller hotels pop up along its scenic coastline.

It will be good particularly for the regions of New Zealand and that's why we will support it.

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