News Worms
News Worms


'We weren't ready' to close deal: Trudeau defends Canada's actions on TPP

'We weren't ready' to close deal: Trudeau defends Canada's actions on TPP

Japan's TPP minister Toshimitsu Motegi, who insisted that the 11 countries had agreed in principle at the ministerial level on bringing into effect the pact without the United States, is scheduled to hold a press conference on Saturday along with Vietnam's Industry and Trade Minister Tran Tuan Anh to announce the results of the ministers' meetings co-chaired by them.

Earlier in the day, the TPP countries agreed on the core elements to move ahead with the trade pact, after last-minute resistance from Canada raised new doubts about its survival.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says she doesn't want to speculate but the deal appears to be in a much more stable place than it was on Friday afternoon when Canada withdraw from talks without explanation.

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.

Trump said he would not enter into large trade agreements, alluding to USA involvement in the North American Free Trade Agreement and the TPP.

He said the original TPPA which included the USA was signed after considering all costs and benefits associated with the trade deal.

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.

"I'm not going to speculate on what other countries might say", Chrystia Freeland said when asked about the allegations that Canada is holding up the TPP.

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.

However, Japan and the APEC host, Viet Nam are now expected to issue a statement at 11 am local time giving an update on the renamed Comprehensive Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) in which just four outstanding areas of contention remain.

The TPP aims to eliminate tariffs on industrial and farm products across a bloc whose trade totaled $356 billion previous year.

It said a "limited set of provisions" from the original deal would be suspended.

Abe said Canada "was not at a stage to confirm the agreement" reached at the ministerial level, a Kyodo report said. The official said the changes didn't come until after Canada informed the group it wasn't going to agree to the deal without them.

Zhang said the Beijing-backed Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade pact will not be impacted by TPP, to which China is not party.

Canada's position has been further complicated by the fact that it is simultaneously renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) with the Trump administration.

The Apec leaders met in closed sessions on Saturday, pausing for the traditional "family photograph", taken above the South China Sea.

Earlier, Mr Trump effectively slammed the door shut on any hope of America rejoining the TPP negotiations during his address to the APEC summit. The official disputes the notion it was a snub because the leaders would mingle at APEC events over the next 24 hours anyway.

"The fact that global meetings were held continuously in a very short time is unprecedented, it did not happen even during the earlier negotiation period", Motegi said.

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