CPTPP must be last trade deal of its kind

Representatives of members of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal wave as they pose for an official picture after the signing agreement ceremony in Santiago, Chile March 8, 2018.

For Vietnam’s seafood industry, the biggest impact of the CPTPP may well be improving quality, according to Nikkei Asian Review. “Trade is good for economic growth, trade is good for jobs, trade is good for promoting prosperity”, he said.

“It’s one step forward, one step back for the trading system overall today”, said Heath Baker, chief policy officer of the Export Council of Australia, an industry body.

The pact will come into force 60 days after it is fully ratified by six of the 11 members.

The federal government wants all domestic processes completed by September.

“By being relentless and determined in our advocacy for Australia and Australian jobs we secured that trade deal”, Mr Turnbull told reporters in Sydney.

Initially, Japan was reluctant to join the trade pact, but it proved to be one of the strongest advocates of the deal after it saw the pact as a way to enhance its role in regional trade.

In addition, processed red meat import tariffs applied by Japan, which now range from 6-50pc, will be eliminated within 15 years; the majority of offal tariffs eliminated within 10-15 years; and the tariffs applied to live cattle imports will also be eliminated. With the United States, it would have represented 40 per cent.

New access for dairy products into Japan, Canada and Mexico, including the elimination of a range of cheese tariffs into Japan covering over $100 million of trade.

Toshimitsu Motegi, Japan’s minister responsible for TPP, told a news conference in the Chilean capital Santiago that he has not given up seeking a US return but said it is “extremely difficult” to renegotiate the terms of the pact.

“Japan is prepared to continue to facilitate the communication and co-ordination among [the] 11 countries”, Mr Motegi said.

Echoing MOFA’s view, the Bureau of Foreign Trade under the Ministry of Economic Affairs said in a press release that it is happy to see the development.

Whereas a Parliamentary committee slammed the lack of adequate “oversight and scrutiny” pertaining to the original TPP, and lamented that “parliament is faced with an all-or-nothing choice” on whether or not to approve trade agreements and can only officially review trade laws once they have officially passed. “It signals our decisive commitment to comprehensive and progressive, and let me add inclusive trade”.

The CPTPP, signed by the trade ministers of the eleven countries party to the agreement is the largest agreement of its kind and is the result of many years of negotiations, RMAC said.

Canadian Minister of Commerce François-Philippe Champagne said his country was proud to part of the agreement.

National University of Singapore economist Davin Chor said the deal showed that the rest of the world was prepared to advance free trade, with or without the US.

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