Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement [December 7, 2009]   [open pdf - 710KB]

"The economic and strategic architectures of Asia are evolving. One part of this evolving architecture is the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (TPP), a free trade agreement [FTA] that includes nations on both sides of the Pacific. The TPP, which originally came into effect in 2006, currently includes Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, and Singapore. The United States, Australia, Peru, and Vietnam have also expressed interest in joining. On November 14, 2009, President Obama committed to engage with current and potential future members of the TPP to shape a broad-based regional agreement. […] U.S. participation in the TPP would involve the negotiation of FTAs with New Zealand and Brunei. The United States currently has FTAs in force with Chile and Singapore, and with interested parties Australia and Peru. Bilateral negotiations with New Zealand may focus on agricultural goods such as beef and dairy products. The possible inclusion of Vietnam may prove controversial from the standpoint of certain U.S. industry groups, such as textiles and apparel, as well as those concerned with human rights and intellectual property issues. The involvement of Vietnam could add a higher level of difficulty and is illustrative of the challenges associated with developing a truly Asia-Pacific-wide trade grouping. All the potential parties may face complex negotiations in integrating the myriad FTAs that already exist between some TPP parties."

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CRS Report for Congress, R40502
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