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#TPP Signed Amid Protests in New Zealand

Cindy Zimmerman

tpp-signProtesters nearly shut down the city of Auckland, New Zealand yesterday, but the ceremonial signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) went on as scheduled.

Trade ministers representing Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States, and Vietnam gathered for the signing of the historic agreement concluded four months ago in Atlanta. The ministers released a joint statement noting that the “signing of the agreement signals an important milestone and the beginning of the next phase for TPP. Our focus now turns to the completion of our respective domestic processes.”

During a press conference following the signing, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman was asked if he thought Congress would pass TPP. “We are working with our stakeholders, our members of Congress, the leadership of Congress, educating everybody as to what’s in the agreement, addressing their questions and concerns,” said Froman. “I’m confident at the end of the day, because of the strong benefits to the U.S. economy … that members of Congress will see the benefits for their constituents and we’ll have the necessary bipartisan support to be approved.”

Listen to Froman’s statement here: USTR Froman at TPP signing ceremony

National Corn Growers Association president Chip Bowling issued a statement in support of the TPP as the signing was complete. “This agreement is good for both corn farmers and our friends and partners in the livestock industry,” said Bowling. “That’s why NCGA members will be going to Capitol Hill in the coming months, asking Congress to vote in favor of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement in 2016.”

National Farmers Union, however, would have been among the Auckland protesters. “TPP is modeled after the failed deals of the past, and it is destined to fail,” said NFU president Roger Johnson. “TPP is a bad deal for rural and urban America alike.”

Audio, International, NCBA, Trade