Cheat Sheet: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal

Representatives of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Member Countries

The U.S. and 11 Pacific countries have recently announced that a trade agreement that would “lower barriers to goods and services and set commercial rules of the road for two-fifths of the world’s economy” is a few inches closer to being passed.

Representatives of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Member Countries

Representatives of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Member Countries. Screencap from TYTNetwork

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal was drawn to link the economies of the 12 Pacific Rim nations closer. Though usually referred to as a trade deal, the provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal with a lot more than just the liberalization of products. It covers more comprehensive areas that are not dealt with by the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The pact aims to strengthen legal protection against drug makers, lengthen the term of copyright protection, enforce stricter environmental and labor rules and provide foreign investors new law’s and much more.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal Member Countries

  • Australia
  • Brunei
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Japan
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • New Zealand
  • Peru
  • Singapore
  • United States
  • Vietnam

The deal would achieve both economic and strategic goals, according to President Obama. The outline of the pact has been drawn, but it would take about a month for the complete details to be fleshed out and made public. It would be early 2016 when Congress would get to debate it. Though the pact is to face a tough fight in the Congress, it would be the biggest trade deal for US signed since 1994 if passed.

Though kept a closely guarded secret, versions of text of the treaty surfaced in WikiLeaks last year. The text contains provisions that would lead to a price hike of life saving medicines in developing nations, warn opposers of the treaty. Critics also argue that the process of drafting the pact is flawed. Rather than negotiate in secret, these critics claim that the general public should be given opportunities to influence the process.

Definite arguments about the significant benefits or detriments about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal are yet to be conjured.


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