US President Barak Obama has stated that the US and eight other countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement have invited Canada to join the TPP negotiations.
In addition to the US, the current TPP countries are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
The US Trade Representative, Ambassador Ron Kirk, said: “Inviting Canada to join the TPP negotiations presents a unique opportunity for the US to build upon this already dynamic trading relationship. Through TPP, we are bringing the relationship with our largest trading partner into the 21st century.
“We look forward to continuing consultation with the Congress and domestic stakeholders regarding Canada’s entry into the TPP as we move closer to a broad-based, high-standard trade agreement in the Asia-Pacific region.”
The next steps in Canada’s invitation will parallel those of Mexico, which was also invited to join the TPP negotiations this week.
The Administration will notify Congress of its intention to include Canada in the TPP negotiations, which will then start a 90-day consultation period with Congress on the US negotiating objectives with respect to Canada.
There will also be a notice in the Federal Register seeking public comments. Ambassador Kirk noted that the TPP is a key element of the Obama Administration’s efforts to support the creation of jobs for Americans by increasing exports, which include natural fibres, to economies of the Asia-Pacific region.
So far, the TPP countries have completed 12 rounds of negotiations and the nine countries have made solid progress. The next round of negotiations is scheduled to take place from July 2–10 in San Diego, California, US.
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