David Parker: Revised TPP deal to be signed tomorrow - without Trump

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09 March, 2018

The original TPP would have represented roughly 40% of the world's economic output.

The deal had been on life support after Trump pulled the United States out of the original deal when he became president.

The People's Democratic Movement party of Chile said via Twitter the trade deal will be disastrous for small and medium-sized businesses and will give disproportionate power to multinational corporations that can, under the soon to be signed accord, sue individual member states in global courts.

The argy-bargy over America's proposed tariffs on steel and aluminium is set to briefly take a back seat as 11 nations sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact.

The final version of the agreement was released in New Zealand on February 21.

President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the original TPP past year, but Canada and its Pacific Rim partners have carried on.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade's estimates, the deal is expected to give a $1.2 billion to $4b boost to New Zealand's real gross domestic product.

Trade ministers and delegates from the remaining members of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) attend the TPP ministerial meeting on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders summit Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017 in Danang, Vietnam.

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More than 20 provisions were suspended or changed in the new agreement, mostly rules over intellectual property originally inserted at the demand of United States negotiators.

After the signing on Thursday, the agreement must also be ratified by member governments in order to go into effect.

Canadian International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne signed on behalf of Canada and Friday he will head to Paraguay to kindle free trade talks with the Mercosur group.

The CPTPP and talks with Mercosur are part of the Canadian strategy to diversify as its traditional and largest trading partner, the US, is shrouded in uncertainty because of the potential for an increase in steel and aluminum tariffs.

Trump, who abandoned TPP because he felt his administration could negotiate better deals one on one, told CNBC earlier this year that he would be open to returning to the agreement if it were "substantially better". However, New Zealand's trade minister said that was unlikely in the near term, while Japan has said altering the agreement now would be very hard.

The Council of Canadians is anxious, however, that with Mercosur, the Liberal government is again rushing into another corporate agreement, without a debate on the needs and wishes of the public, Dey said. Trump has promised an announcement of the tariffs later Thursday.

Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo, in Santiago for the CPTPP signing, told Reuters he would not allow the United States to use the tariffs to pressure it in the NAFTA talks.


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