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Trans-Pacific Partnership?


The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a proposed trade agreement among twelve Pacific Rim countries concerning a variety of matters of economic policy, about which agreement was reached on 5 October 2015 after 5 years of negotiations. Among other things, the TPP Agreements contains measures to lower trade barriers such as tariffs, and establish an investor-state dispute settlement mechanism (but states can opt out from tobacco related measures). As of 2011, the agreement's goal had been to "enhance trade and investment among the TPP partner countries, to promote innovation, economic growth and development, and to support the creation and retention of jobs." The United States government has considered the TPP as the companion agreement to the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a broadly similar agreement between the United States and the European Union.

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. Beginning in 2008, additional countries joined the discussion for a broader agreement: Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, the United States, and Vietnam, bringing the total number of participating countries in the negotiations to twelve.

Participating nations aimed at completing negotiations in 2012, but contentious issues such as agriculture, intellectual property, and services and investments caused negotiations to continue. They finally reached agreement on 5 October 2015.[10] Implementing the TPP has been one of the trade agenda goals of the Obama administration in the US. On October 5, 2015 Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper expected "the full text of the agreement to be released in the next few days, with signatures on the finalized text and deal early in the new year, and ratification over the next two years."  Although the text of the treaty had not been made public, Wikileaks has published several leaked documents since 2013.

A number of global health professionals, internet freedom activists, environmentalists, organised labour, advocacy groups, and elected officials have criticised and protested against the treaty, in large part because of the secrecy of negotiations, the agreement's expansive scope, and controversial clauses in drafts leaked to the public.


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