New TPP deal signed by NZ in Chile


Anyway, it will be a slap in the face of the United States, particularly its president, Donald Trump, who just after occupying the White House in 2017 rejected his country's permanence in the then called Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

The agreement also opens up free trade to Canada, Mexico, Peru - a combined population of 480 million - for the first time.

"We will be giving a very powerful signal", he said at a news conference after giving a joint statement with trade ministers from Canada and New Zealand.

International Trade Minister François-Philippe Champagne is leaving for South America on Thursday to put Canada's signature on a revised 11-country free trade deal that will create one of the largest trading blocks in the world, as well as for talks to join the Mercosur customs union.

The TPP, which would have represented 40 percent of the global economy and almost one-quarter of its trade, was left for dead after Trump pulled out to pursue his "America First" agenda.

The eleven nations that remained after the USA pulled out of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) are set to sign a revamped trade pact on Thursday.

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The European Union said this week that it is ready to retaliate against Trump's tariffs - of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum imports - with counter-measures against iconic US products like Harley Davidson motorcycles, Levi's jeans and bourbon.

The ministers dropped key provisions that the Americans had required on protection of intellectual property, among others.

Canada and 10 other countries are preparing to sign the rebooted Trans-Pacific Partnership this week, and Japan's envoy says it will help set the stage for closer relations with China.

The CPTPP will reduce trade tariffs for member countries that together account for more than 13 percent of the global economy and covers 500 million people.

"The signing is a significant moment for open markets, free trade and the rules-based global system", Australian Trade Minister Steven Ciobo said in a statement heralding Thursday's signing.

"It will be to the benefit of all the partners", Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said of the deal at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January.

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Mexico and Peru will also get better entry to countries on the other side of the Pacific.

"The CPTPP also contains ways to address complex non-tariff barriers, which are often costlier than tariffs and more hard to quantify".

The CPTPP agreement leaves the door open for the U.S. to rejoin the club, a step Mr Trump in January hinted he would be open to if the USA could get a "substantially better deal".

The Labour Party, which rejected the previous TPP deal, has trumpeted the revised agreement as an improvement.

With the deal signed, members will begin domestic ratification procedures.

"Like it or not, the Trump ad-ministration and the U.S. could find itself increasingly isolated in the worldwide trade policy arena", he said.

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