US May Take Another Look at TPP That Trump Squashed

Today, President Donald Trump asked his trade advisers to look at rejoining the Trans Pacific Partnership, a multinational trade pact he withdrew the United States from last year.

The goal of the TPP was to cut trade barriers in some of the fastest-growing economies of the Asia-Pacific region and to counter China’s rising economic and diplomatic clout.  But in early 2017, Trump pulled out of the deal, citing concerns over the loss of US jobs.

Even before Trump’s official withdrawal, US participation was dead, because congress opposed the deal.

In 2088, the US entered negotiations to TPP, and took until late 2016 for the then-Obama administration to abandon its attempt to push the pact through Congress.

And since Trump has ordered Kudlow to look into rejoining TPP, Senator Ben Sasse, a pro-trade Republican, said it was good news.

Although the US withdrew from the TPP talks,  the other 11 countries have forged ahead with their own agreement, and in the process eliminated chapters on investment, government procurement and intellectual property that were key planks of Washington’s demands.

The pact also includes  Mexico and Canada which are renegotiating the terms of the North American Free Trade Agreement with the United States. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will meet Trump next week. Japan, a close U.S. ally, signed up for the 11-country trade pact.

As part of his 2016 campaign, Trump was frequently skeptical of the value of multilateral trade pacts, arguing instead that bilateral deals could offer better terms.

Trump is also struggling to get support from other countries for his recent threat to impose import tariffs on China and the U.S. farm lobby is arguing that retaliation by China would hit American agricultural exports.



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