Vietnam says fundamental deal reached on trade

Vietnam says fundamental deal reached on trade

Vietnam says fundamental deal reached on trade

Japanese Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi said on Friday that countries including Canada had now agreed on a plan to move ahead with the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, but Canadian officials did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

Australian officials remain tight-lipped on the progress, but New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the so-called TPP-11 were no longer talking about countries walking away from the deal.

Instead they found Japan's Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, holding crisis meetings with Canada's Justin Trudeau over an undisclosed issue.

Efforts to reach an agreement this weekend on a Pacific Rim trade pact appeared to collapse Friday when persistent concerns over the deal, including Canada's, forced the abrupt cancellation of a scheduled leaders' meeting.

Canadian Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne later blamed "a misunderstanding about the schedule" for Trudeau's absence, but said more work was needed to take TPP forward - specifically mentioning the auto sector and cultural protection.

Trudeau predicted Saturday that the TPP talks would help Canada in its tough renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

The original agreement - the so-called TPP12 - is being renegotiated now after U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew America in January.

Ministerial talks on a communique for the APEC leaders were extended into a second day on Thursday in the face of USA demands for changes to the language used concerning issues such as free trade and protectionism, officials at the talks said.

Talks between trade and foreign ministers from the group failed to reach agreement on their usual joint statement in the face of US demands to remove language about supporting free trade and fighting protectionism.

"The TPP is only marginally about trade", says Larry Brown.

Meeting on the sidelines of the APEC Summit in Da Nang in Vietnam, the remaining eleven nations - Australia, Chile, New Zealand, Brunei, Singapore, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru and Vietnam - released a joint statement on Saturday saying they were committed to free and open trade. It is now the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Partly to counter China's growing dominance in Asia, Japan had been lobbying hard for the TPP pact, which aims to eliminate tariffs on industrial and farm products across an11-nation bloc whose trade totalled $356 billion past year.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said at a press conference in Vietnam that Mr Trudeau would have to be the one to answer as to why he pulled out of a meeting to revive the TPP11.

Nafta talks with the United States were not affecting Canada's stance on TPP negotiations, he said.

At this stage there's no meeting of all 11 leaders planned for Saturday.

At the start of the meeting, Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang noted Apec's success in removing barriers to trade - as well as the new uncertainty in the world.

"We're in an easier place to try things out, to test policy sensitivities even if we don't get everybody around the table", Bollard said. Chinese President Xi Jinping drew loud applause during a speech to the same group when he urged support for the "multilateral trading regime" and progress toward a free-trade zone in the Asia-Pacific.

Later, leaders of the 21 Apec economies agreed to address "unfair trade practices" and called for the removal of "market distorting subsidies", in contrast to communiques they have issued in the past.

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