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Formal notification gives Canada the green light into TPP talks

Published by Stephanie Brooks on July 10, 2012

The White House notified Congressional leaders Monday it seeks to enter negotiations with Mexico in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and Canada, being the second invitee at the recent G20 Summit in Mexico, was poised to get the same confirmation soon thereafter.

It came in the form of a letter yesterday from USTR Ambassador Ron Kirk, stating the US intends to bring Canada into negotiations on the free trade agreement with eight other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Expanding the negotiations to include additional countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region has been a longstanding US objective," it reads. "Canada's participation advances this goal and further increases the economic significance of a TPP Agreement."

Canada will join the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Peru, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei in the trade talks.

It is tradition for the White House to formally notify Congress before entering into trade negotiations. Canada's inclusion along with its two NAFTA partners means manufacturers with integrated cross-border supply chains can be assured their interests will be represented.

"Canada is already the most significant destination for US exports," states the letter. "In 2011, US exports to Canada totaled $337 billion, of which non-agricultural goods were $262 billion, agricultural goods were $19 billion, and services were $56 billion."

CME and many of its member associations in the Canadian Manufacturing Coalition have been actively advocating for Canada's inclusion, along with the Government of Canada, the US Administration, and American Congress.

The 13th round of negotiations just wrapped up in San Diego, and the next round is scheduled for September in Northern Virginia.


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