The TPP trade deal 5 things to know

GMT 10:37 2016 Thursday ,04 February

Arab Today, arab today The TPP trade deal 5 things to know

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
Auckland - AFP

Twelve countries around signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), on Thursday in New Zealand, a huge free trade pact. 

Here are five key points about the TPP:

The biggest deal of its kind in history, the TPP aims to remove tariffs and other barriers to free trade between 12 Pacific Rim nations.  

Those countries are Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam, and together they account for 40 percent of the global economy. 

The deal is seen as part of President Barack Obama's "pivot" to Asia, as he seeks to counter the rising power of China in the region and across the world. "TPP allows America -- and not countries like China -- to write the rules of the road in the 21st century," he said after the pact was signed. 

Participating countries now have two years to get the final deal approved at home, but this may not be straightforward -- particularly in the US, where opponents say the TPP is a job killer.
While supporters say the deal will boost economies by harnessing the power of free trade, it has also come in for criticism around the world. Tens of thousands of protestors clogged the streets of Auckland to protest the deal Thursday, saying the TPP will benefit big business at the expense of small firms. 


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