US Trade Policy in the Pacific Basin: the bilateral option is unlikely to bear fruit.
In short, leading Republicans want the TPP and prefer that Trump try to fix it instead of rejecting it. And almost every major US farm and industry association supports the TPP.
Fixes to specific problems with TPP provisions cited by the pharmaceutical and financial services industries had been substantially completed by President Obama and USTR Michael Froman in anticipation of a vote on TPP implementing legislation during the lame-duck session of Congress after the election. Trump’s election abruptly stopped that legislative effort and the targeted revisions to TPP obligations. A new negotiation would allow improvements to be included in the core treaty text.
Reopening trade negotiations also allows the addition of new participants. Those that had been most interested in joining a high-standard Asia-Pacific pact included Korea, Taiwan, and Colombia. Inviting these countries to join the original TPP signatories in a broader Asia-Pacific trade initiative would provide several additional benefits.
[ > Peterson Institute for International Economics – February 2017 ]