12 nations sign Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, but roadblocks remain.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership, one of the biggest multinational trade deals ever, has been signed by 12 member nations in New Zealand.

The TPP involves the US, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Peru.
The 12 nations account for some 40% of the world’s economy – they now have two years to approve or reject the pact. The TPP will now undergo a two-year ratification period in which at least six countries – that account for 85% of the combined gross domestic production of the 12 nations – must approve for the deal to be implemented.

US President Barack Obama said, “Partnership would give the United States an advantage over other leading economies. TPP allows America – and not countries like China – to write the rules of the road in the 21st Century, which is especially important in a region as dynamic as the Asia-Pacific,” he said.

US Trade Representative Michael Froman said the deal could add $100bn (£68.5bn) a year to US growth. “After five years of negotiation, signing the TPP is an important milestone in our efforts to set high-standard rules of the road in the Asia Pacific region and more generally, and to deliver an agreement that will benefit American workers, farmers and businesses,” he said.

But the TPP continues to face opposition. Some Americans fear that jobs will move from the US to growing countries. In New Zealand more than 1,000 protesters caused traffic disruption in Auckland.


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