Second Update on TPP Talks in Brunei
Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations continued in Brunei today with negotiating groups from the nine TPP countries (Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam, and the United States) holding meetings on agriculture, services, investment, government procurement, competition, environment, and labor. The groups focused on the objectives that they had set for this round: preparation of consolidated text and proposals for cooperation. Negotiations will continue through Saturday, with groups on telecommunications, e-commerce, textiles, customs, technical barriers to trade, and trade capacity building beginning Friday.
Government officials and business representatives joined on Thursday for a full-day seminar on labor, during which TPP delegations discussed their respective approaches to incorporating labor provisions in their trade agreements. During the seminar, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative Lewis Karesh gave a presentation on the U.S. approach, focusing on labor provisions in U.S. trade agreements, the importance of respecting fundamental labor rights, and ways to ensure the effective enforcement of labor law. Other TPP delegations also gave presentations, including Brunei's Commissioner of Labor Hajah Rosliah Hasbollah, who discussed the administration and enforcement of labor law in Brunei.
The TPP partners reached consensus on Malaysia's request to join the negotiations on Tuesday of this week, following which USTR Ron Kirk notified Congress of the Administration’s intent to include Malaysia in the ongoing negotiations. Visit www.ustr.gov/tpp to see these notification letters, and for complete information on U.S. participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership.