The Trans-Pacific Partnership: Building on U.S. Economic and Strategic Partnerships in the Asia-Pacific

“The TPP will boost our economies, lowering barriers to trade and investment, increasing exports, and creating more jobs for our people…the TPP has the potential to be a model not only for the Asia Pacific but for future trade agreements.”
– President Barack Obama

The Trans-Pacific Partnership

Negotiation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a cornerstone of U.S. trade policy, a priority initiative to promote economic recovery through increased exports and jobs, and the economic centerpiece of the Obama Administration’s strategic rebalance toward Asia-Pacific. With shared values and strong economic ties, the United States and its eleven TPP partners are working to form a comprehensive and high-standard trade and investment framework in the rapidly growing Asia-Pacific region.

TPP Members

Since the first round of negotiations in March 2010 between seven TPP partners – United States, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, and Singapore– TPP membership has grown to twelve, with the addition of Vietnam and Malaysia (2010), Mexico and Canada (2012), and most recently Japan (2013). TPP members are a diverse group – large and small economies, advanced and emerging, on four continents – but they share the belief that the best way to generate economic growth and job creation is to foster a more open and competitive environment for trade and investment.

TPP Goals

TPP partners are addressing 21st century issues affecting trade and investment, as well as providing strong protections for workers and the environment. The TPP will be transformative, serving as a platform for broader regional integration as well as a catalyst for advancing trade liberalization globally.

The US/TPP Economic Relationship

The Asia-Pacific is home to the world’s most dynamic and fastest growing economies. Current TPP members represent about 40% of global GDP. Over the next two decades, it is forecast that nearly 50 percent of world growth will be generated in the Asia-Pacific region, yielding almost one billion new middle class consumers.

TPP includes some of America’s top trading partners – Canada (1st), Mexico (3rd), Japan (4th) – and collectively accounted for $1.5 trillion in trade with the United States in 2012 (see data box below). Additionally, in 2011, $83 billion in U.S. foreign direct investment (FDI) flowed into TPP member countries, while the United States received $61 billion in FDI from TPP members. Total U.S. FDI in TPP countries and inward FDI from TPP partners have both doubled since 2002, reaching $843 billion and $596 billion in 2011, respectively.

Export/Import Activity

  • In 2012, U.S. goods trade with TPP countries totaled more than $1.5 trillion.
  • U.S. merchandise exports to TPP partner countries in 2012 totaled $689 billion, accounting for almost 45 percent of total U.S. exports.
  • In 2011, U.S. trade in services with TPP partners totaled more than $242 billion.