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Australia remains unconvinced on TPP’s imminent demise

The Australian government is not backing away from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement despite US president Donald Trump making killing the agreement a first priority, according to 9News.
This statement follows a report stating that President Trump’s press secretary, Sean Spicer, said that President Trump would stick to his planned list of executive orders and that ditching the TPP is part of that list.
“He is going to make sure every deal he cuts, just like he did in business, puts American workers and American manufacturing, American services first,” Spicer added.
Australian trade minister Steve Ciobo told America’s CNN that the TPP was not ‘dead’.
“What I would encourage President-elect Trump to do, what we’d really encourage the Americans to do, is to consider that there may be aspects of the TPP that they don’t like, but this is not a deal to be junked,” Ciobo said.
President Trump has previously said that he is only interested in doing bilateral deals with other countries.
However, according to Dr Giovanni Di Lieto, lecturer at Monash Business School, Australia all is not lost, even with the TPP potentially never seeing the light of day. Australia has a number of other trans-pacific trade options which its industry, including manufacturers can exploit.
“Running alongside the crippled TPP, and potentially of more importance to Australian trade, has been the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership,” Dr Leto said.
“If, as seems likely, the RCEP is accomplished in the near future, it will be the world’s largest free-trade agreement, covering a population of 3.5 billion, or more than 50 per cent of the world total, and about 40 per cent of the world trade volumes.”

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