Ambassadors discuss challenges posed by Trans-Pacific Partnership
The implementation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement still faces various challenges in some developing countries, according to a panel of ambassadors.
Views were exchanged during a special event titled Challenges and Opportunities for TPP Countries at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington on Tuesday.
Envoys to the US from Canada, Japan, Peru and Vietnam discussed challenges and opportunities they face on the TPP.
The TPP is a trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim countries. It was approved on Oct 5 by Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam, after seven years of negotiations
Luis Miguel Castilla, Peru’s ambassador to the US, said that the agreement’s intellectual property terms are a challenge.
‘For Peru, in joining the US agreement, we have done a lot of homework already,” he said. “And now IP is the area that we need to produce new regulations so we can meet the new standard that has been agreed upon.
“I think in our case, it is not a challenge for the legal framework; the main challenge for us is to develop our own capabilities,” he said.
“Previously, we have had a trade agreement with the US, and now this has been moved to a higher-level standard,” Castilla said.
“We are now asked to have institutions similar to the US. I think we need to strengthen our own institutions to be able to comply with the high standard of agreements that we agreed upon.”
Pham Quang Vinh, ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam to the US, said that the Vietnamese are quite optimistic about the TPP, and most people support it.
“And this is because of the market access we will be having,” he said. “And also, this will attract more foreign investment to Vietnam. People in Vietnam are lacking foreign goods.
“We are a less developed country compared with the high standard rules of the TPP,” he said. “How can we compete in that environment is a question.
He said that “the second thing is that we still see a lot of demand for innovation and reform in the market in complying with the high TPP standards to have a higher productivity.”
Castilla and Kanji Yamanouchi, minister of economic affairs at the Japanese Embassy in Washington, agreed that China’s influence is important whether in or out of the TPP.
“China is critical, whether as an important trading partner or in terms of its investment in Latin American countries. For us, it makes absolute sense to have China joining the TPP,” Castilla said.
I think in our case, it is not a challenge for the legal framework; the main challenge for us is to develop our own capabilities.”