Biden might look to rejoin Pacific trade agreement


Biden might look to rejoin Pacific trade agreement

The Biden administration might look to rejoin the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. The CPTPP, formerly the Trans-Pacific Partnership, is a trade pact made up of 11 countries including Japan, Canada and Mexico.

The head of the University of Missouri’s Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute, Pat Westhoff, tells Brownfield rejoining the CPTPP offers few positives and negatives for U.S. agriculture.

“We do have agreements with some of these countries but not with all of them so there will be a few countries for which there might be some gains,” he said. “I don’t think there’s a lot of huge gains in agriculture here necessarily, but there’s probably not a lot of negatives to worry about either on the other hand.”

Westhoff said the main benefit of rejoining the pact might be leverage against China.

“China was not part of the original agreement,” he said. “The expectation was that they either might want to join it at some point, in which case they’d have to follow the new rules that are set up or they’d at least have to deal with the facts on the ground of having this agreement there.”

He said China will likely pose ‘trade issues’ throughout the Biden administration and beyond.

Former President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the trade pact in the first half of his term. President Biden has already begun reversing some of Trump’s policy changes by rejoining the World Health Organization and the Paris Agreement late last week. Westhoff said other countries like the UK might also join the CPTPP.

Currently, the CPTPP is comprised of Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Japan, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

Pat Westhoff Interview

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