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By David Keene
Allowing states to innovate could reduce dependency on bureaucracy
Topic - Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), also known as the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement, is a multilateral free trade agreement that aims to further liberalise the economies of the Asia-Pacific region; specifically, Article 1.1.3 notes: “The Parties seek to support the wider liberalisation process in APEC consistent with its goals of free and open trade and investment.” The original agreement between the countries of Brunei, Chile, New Zealand and Singapore was signed on June 3, 2005, and entered into force on May 28, 2006. Five additional countries – Australia, Malaysia, Peru, United States, and Vietnam – are negotiating to join the group. On the last day of the 2010 APEC summit, November 14, leaders of the nine negotiating countries endorsed the proposal advanced by President Obama that set a target for settlement of negotiations by the next APEC summit in November 2011. - Source: Wikipedia
President Obama will try to revive a massive free-trade agreement, the centerpiece of his Asia policy, when he departs Tuesday for a weeklong trip to four Pacific Rim nations.
A group of American celebrities and other activists want President Barack Obama to refuse to sign an international trade agreement until Japan bans the capture and slaughter of dolphins in the fishing town of Taiji.
The Obama administration failed to meet its self-imposed deadline of Dec. 31 for completing a major new initiative that would affect a vast swath of the economy.
President Obama has stepped up efforts to negotiate far-reaching trade deals with Asia and Europe in his second term, but he faces an uphill battle next year in Congress to gain the same authority his predecessors had to finalize such agreements.
The Obama administration is close to completing a major trade agreement with a handful of Asian countries, including Japan.
The recent federal partial government shutdown and the ongoing bickering in Washington between Democrats and Republicans could scare away potential trade partners in Asia, business leaders say.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers in the House are forming a new caucus to promote a new free-trade deal that would open up markets around the Pacific Rim, including the high-coveted Japanese market.
The top U.S. trade official said Tuesday that he is "cautiously optimistic" about the nation's ability to complete a major free-trade pact with 11 other key Pacific Rim nations by the end of the year, after the latest round of the talks on the potential Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) wrapped up last week in Malaysia.
Economists say the long-awaited addition of Japan to a pending trade agreement between the U.S. and the Asia-Pacific region was worth the wait, and the benefits will outweigh any slowdown in negotiations.
Despite the postelection talk of bipartisanship, good feelings in American politics don't guarantee policy success, and nowhere has this been truer than in international trade. Just look at the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement.
The free-trade consensus of the previous two decades has frayed under President Obama, and while he has pushed through some low-level agreements, he has fallen far short of his predecessors on this key driver of the nation's economy, and analysts say the U.S. is lagging behind many of its chief competitors.
Suddenly, it seems, President Obama is all about the Pacific. As he put it at a weekend summit of the region's leaders in Hawaii, "The United States is a Pacific power and we are here to stay." Unfortunately, thus far in his presidency, Mr. Obama has caused many of his guests to see America as less and less of a power and prompted them to have serious doubts about our willingness to stay in a strategically significant way.
The Obama administration is hoping to build on the momentum of recent free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama as attention turns to the Trans-Pacific Partnership and trade promotion authority.
Now that Congress approved the long-delayed free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama on Wednesday night, trade experts want lawmakers to harness the momentum and turn their attention to other potential deals in what is seen as a way to boost the economy and create jobs.