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15.12.2009 Business & Finance

USTR notifies Congress on Asia-Pacific trade talks

By gna
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 15 (Xinhua/GNA) -- The Obama administration Monday notified Congress that President Barack Obama intends to enter into negotiations of a regional, Asia-Pacific trade agreement with Vietnam, New Zealand, Singapore and other four countries.

In letters to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate President Pro Tempore Robert Byrd, U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Ron Kirk said that such an agreement would help to expand American exports, saving and creating good jobs here at home.

"USTR will now intensify consultations with Congress and with American stakeholders to develop objectives for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement negotiations, in order to enter already-scheduled talks in March with a robust U.S. view that seeks the highest economic benefit" for U.S., said Kirk in a statement.

"The development of our negotiating positions will be a collaborative effort with elected leaders and stakeholders here at home, in order to shape an eventual Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement that is a new kind of trade agreement for the 21st century, bringing home the jobs and economic opportunity we want all our trade deals to deliver," he said.

Obama announced last month in Tokyo that the U.S. would restart negotiations on the TPP. The first round of negotiations has already been announced by the current Trans-Pacific Partnership members for March 2010, according to the USTR.


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