The TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) deal is seen as dead in the water after a shocking upset election victory by President-Elect Donald Trump.
The deal, which would have created the world’s largest free trade zone, has been given up on by the Obama administration, after a Trump victory marked a turn towards isolationism and protectionism.
Obama had been determined to convince congress to approve the deal during his last few months in office. Now that Trump has been declared the victor, his motivation seems to have expired.
Knowing this, experts are calling on Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to pursue free-trade deals with Asia in an attempt to diversify the economy, trade partners, and make Canada less reliant on trade with the United States.
The Canadian Government declined to comment on the fate of the TPP after the American election. A spokesman for International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland said the Liberals will continue to consult Canadians on the deal.
The deal is essentially useless for the 11 other countries that were negotiating without the participation of the largest economy, the United States.
“We made a commitment to consult Canadians on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and we will abide by that commitment,” Alex Lawrence, Press Secretary for Ms. Freeland, said in a statement. “The House of Commons trade committee is studying the TPP’s impact, and has not concluded its consultations; we will continue to support this work.”
However, a former senior aide to Trudeau referred to the TPP as a “dead man walking.”
Canada and Japan had already been conducting free-trade negotiations before the TPP deal took over in 2015. All 12 countries have agreed to the TPP, but each was required to ratify it afterwards.
Canada joining the TPP was mostly to protect itself. The deal would have given 11 other countries the same access to U.S. markets that Canada has enjoyed for decades.
The deal was aimed as a counter to Chinese influence in the pacific region, a pre-emptive move to ensure western style trade rules would become the norm.
Additionally, it would standardize fair labour practices across the 12 countries, including freedom for workers to unionize and bargain collectively, while restricting child labour.
The TPP was also largely controversial, specifically in regards to its copyright and internet regulations.
Many experts and advocacy groups from the tech sector were very opposed to the TPP, which included stricter copyright regulations across all 12 countries. Copyright protection would also be extended from 50 years after the death of the creator to 70 years.
Canadians could potentially be charged or fined for reposting sports highlights, sharing songs and pictures with each other, and even transferring media from one of their devices to another, according to the proposed regulations.
The deal was also criticized for being negotiated largely in secret, with little or no input from the citizens that would be affected by the deal. The T PP was also planned to be fast-tracked through government approval procedures — an attempt to limit debate and public discourse about the agreement.