Written on Friday, March 1, 2013
Event at Teamsters Headquarters, TPP Information Sharing and Campaign Planning
Negotiations for the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) among 10 Pacific Rim nations (with potentially many more eventually joining) continue at an accelerated pace under a cloak of secrecy with nearly no public debate in the U.S.
Many organizations – representing labor, consumer, environment, human rights, public health, family farm, economic justice, development, faith-based, internet freedom communities and more – have been working in varying capacities and in different spaces to raise awareness, advocate and build campaigns around the TPP. In early March, the 17th round of TPP negotiations will take place in Singapore, and leaders have announced their intention to accelerate the talks with the goal to complete them by the APEC leaders meeting in early October 2013.
The United States recently embarked on ambitious negotiations to create a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with 10 countries that will liberalize and promote trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region (Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam).
Japan has announced its intentions to join the negotiations as well. The United States has also agreed to launch negotiations with the European Union to establish a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a free-trade area between the world’s two largest trading partners.
Both TPP and TTIP would have trade implications for all sectors of the economy, including the food and agricultural sector. The 10 U.S. TPP partners, and potential TPP partner Japan, have a population of 475 million people and a combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP) estimated at over $11.5 trillion (2011).
The EU encompasses 27 countries with a combined population and GDP of 502.5 million and $17.6 trillion, respectively. Both regions are important markets for U.S. agricultural exports; hence, the interest in how these agreements might affect the United States.