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Polity: TPP deal on rocks. Surprise!

Written By: - Date published: 11:41 am, June 24th, 2014 - 10 comments
Categories: john key, Minister for International Embarrassment, us politics - Tags: , ,

polity_square_for_lynnReposted from Polity

Just a couple of days after President Obama told John Key what he wanted to hear on trade, realism has reared up again:

Hopes of hammering out a final deal on the 12-country Trans Pacific Partnership agreement this year appear to be fading, Prime Minister John Key indicated this afternoon….

“But I myself don’t think you’ll get much of either a decision or movement pre the mid-term elections in the United States, and they’re in November.”

That meant the agreement would now “possibly” be finalised in 2015.

“‘But my whole argument around TPP and just generally in terms of trade deals has been that it’s not worth sacrificing the quality of the deal for timing.”

I expect this will be the American pattern for a while. As soon as there are hopes of a deal, the US will point to an obstacle that can only be cleared by everyone else making still further concessions.

For all the rhetoric, other countries are much more desperate for free trade with the US than vice versa. And the US knows it.

Keeping New Zealand inside the TPP is a “nice to have” in the US end-game. (And for the Japanese end-game, too.) The TPPA will survive if New Zealand is absent. Which means the final agreement likely won’t be worth it for us to sign.

lprent: Also see Josie Pagani’s Acronyms and secret handshakes no way to sell a trade deal at Pundit. Surprisingly, we agree for a change.

10 comments on “Polity: TPP deal on rocks. Surprise! ”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Surprised that the TPPA organisers don’t just say “fuck off” to the US and revert back to the original group of countries before the US stuck their nose in. Also tell Japan to fuck off while they’re at it.

    • Matthew Hooton 1.1

      I agree. NZ invented the TPP – NZ is the depositary of the existing treaty – and the whole idea was that it was the gold standard, like CER: a step ahead of other trade deals, not a compromise.

  2. karol 2

    Qualified good news. I’m a little concerned that Key is shilling for Obama in trying to lull people into thinking the battle has been won… while they power on with it behind the scenes.

    • blue leopard 2.1

      I agree Karol,

      Remarkably high public awareness has been achieved over the dodginess of this agreement (much thanks to those who have worked to ensure this is the case). Therefore it could be a case of putting it on the back burner and waiting for the public to lose interest/attention over the matter so it can be slipped through later when people are focused on other things.

      I have seen tactic used many times before. It is formulaic.

      Really hope this isn’t the case this time, yet there are powerful players involved and massive power/money issues at stake – so I hope that people are aware of this tactic and stay alert to the potential that it may be being applied here. 🙁

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    TPP deal on rocks. Surprise!

    Ah, that would explain why Josie Pagani is so upset.

    For all the rhetoric, other countries are much more desperate for free trade with the US than vice versa.

    And it’s really time that we got over that. Trade isn’t going to make us better off in the long term due to silly little things like the collapse of the global financial system and Peak Oil.

  4. karol 4

    And now the NZ Herald anonymous editor is running John Key/Obama’s lines on the TPP: saying Japan should step up or get out.

    And the subtext is how Great wee Johnnie did in Washington in pushing for the kind of TPP that will benefit NZ.

    Is the NZ Herald very much different from the Chinese newspapers?

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Only in that the Chinese newspapers usually take a party line against western economic and military empire; while the NZ Herald usually take a party line for western economic and military empire.

  5. Tracey 5


    How does Key’s statement above reconcile with obamas in my link?

    The land of the free has some of the biggest trade restrictions on the planet to protect its own, including back door farmer subsidies

  6. Sable 6

    Wait until “after” the election. If Keys gets back in I suspect this will come back out from under the table. Keys gave away our privacy without even blinking with the spy law, whats to stop him giving away everything else as well….

    Worse still most people I have spoken to seem to know next to nothing about the TPPA. Its far from dead….

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