Passage of trade agreements creates momentum for expanded agenda

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue acknowledged that completion of the three trade deals puts the U.S. in a much stronger position to negotiate TPP as well as a broader global trade agenda. 

"We're on a good roll," he said. "It's time for an aggressive trade agenda."

U.S. negotiators have been in talks this week in Lima, Peru with the eight other TPP partner nations — Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. 

"A number of other countries in APEC are taking a closer look at TPP," Kird said. "But we're not going to slow down the current process for other countries to decide," he said.  

"We’re putting great focus on the Asia-Pacific, because that’s where the world’s most dynamic economies are expanding rapidly and creating significant opportunities to increase U.S. exports and jobs."  

During talks in Lima, the U.S. officials are still addressing "unfair advantages given to state-owned enterprises, an issue that has united labor and business groups in the United States.," Kirk said. 

These are "new issues never before included in a trade agreement," Kirk said.

"We are also including new obligations, and for the first time in any trade agreement, we are promoting good regulatory practices."

Beyond that, Kirk said there are three top issues he's hopes to reach agreement on at APEC including, promoting green growth, strengthening regional economic integration and expanding trade and advancing regulatory cooperation. 

President Obama will participate in the APEC meeting in the crafting of his first trade accord. 

Congress approved the three FTAS on Oct. 12 after years of delays under President George W. Bush and continued hold-ups as the Obama administration tweaked each deal. Obama signed the accords on Oct. 21.

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