Controversial TPP pact signed after 7 years of negotiations

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One of the biggest and most controversial trade deals in history, Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement has been signed among 12 Pacific rim countries on 4 February 2016, in Auckland, New Zealand after 7 years of negotiations. It will come in to force one it get approved  at home.

The 12 countries which have signed the pact are : Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Brunei Darussalam, Japan, Canada, United States, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Australia and New Zealand. These member countries across the Pacific Rim are home to 800 million people and account for 40% of global trade. 

What is Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement ?

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a free trade agreement promising to liberalise trade and investment between the 12 nations, which make up about 36 percent of the world's GDP and 40% of the global trade.The agreement will create a unified market similar to European Union by liberalizing the trade factors in nearly all goods and services by eliminating tariff and non-tariff barriers. Historically, the TPP is an expansion of the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (TPSEP or P4), which was signed by Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, and Singapore in 2005.

Objective : (a) Lower trade barriers such as tariffs (b) Establish an investor-state dispute settlement mechanism (c) Establish a common framework for intellectual property (d) Enforce standards for labour law and environmental law.

Motto of the Agreement : "promote economic growth; support the creation and retention of jobs; enhance innovation, productivity and competitiveness; raise living standards; reduce poverty in our countries; and promote transparency, good governance, and enhanced labor and environmental protections".

Features of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement 

⇒ The agreement will serve as a common platform for regional economic integration of Pacific Rim countries.

⇒ It will create co-operative trade environment that will boost the economic growth of every member nations.

⇒ It will propmote innovation, competitiveness and productivity of the member nations by addressing crucial trade issues such as labour laws, intellectual property rights etc.

⇒  It aims at reduction or complete elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers in a list of goods, services and investments which will be leading factor in growth of trade among the member nations.

⇒ It Facilities seamless integration of economies of members facilitating; opening markets, cross border trade and development of production and supply chains.

A pact to curb the growing might of China

Critics of the pact says that the deal could be used by the US to counter China's influence in the region and is part of its so-called “Asia Pivot” or Rebalance doctrine and seeks to counter the rising power of China. US President Barack Obama said that "TPP allows America -- and not countries like China -- to write the rules of the road in the 21st century,"

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