สภาผู้ส่งสินค้าทางเรือแห่งประเทศไทย (สภาผู้ส่งออก)
Thai National Shippers’ Council
  • Thai Language
  • English Language
ความเคลื่อนไหวทางเศรษฐกิจและการขนส่ง
Shpg Gazette 25/2/14 - TPP blockage: Japan wants its farmers protected, the US, its automakers

MAJOR stumbling blocks to the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) are Japan's wish to protect its farmers and the American desire to protect its automakers, reports Reuters.


The US wants Tokyo to scrap tariffs on rice, beef and pork, dairy products, wheat and sugar - 586 product lines - while Japan wants Washington to set a schedule for ending tariffs on cars and light trucks. And neither wants to budge.

Smaller countries face intense domestic opposition to the entire free trade concept. Malaysia faces opposition to the TPP both its political opposition and powerful elements within the ruling party.

In the face of the US administration's failure to have smooth launches to it other initiatives, the TTP threatens the diminishing stature of the White House if comes unstuck.

All this despite its determination to bypass a hostile Congress through presidential decrees such as the fast-track initiative, called the Trade Promotion Authority.

An agreement between the United States and Japan would set the tone for other countries engaged in the TPP: Australia, Brunei, Chile, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

New Zealand officials, quoted by Reuters, say an "in-principle" deal might emerge during US President Barack Obama's April visit, but it would only paper over big differences to be negotiated later.

"What if everything they've negotiated is pointless and we have to re-negotiate it to get it past Congress?" said Deborah Elms, who has regular talks with TPP negotiators as head of the Temasek Foundation Centre for Trade and Negotiations, a Singapore think tank.

The White House had hoped to complete the deal last year, a treaty that would cut tariffs and set common standards, but that didn't happen.

Said New Zealand Trade Minister Tim Groser: "I don't know if we are ever going to do this deal, but it has the smell of reaching a moment of truth."