China Notably Absent from New Trans-Pacific Partnership

By Alex Yeager

Announced on October 5, the United States and 12 other nations came to an agreement on a “sprawling free trade agreement” entitled the “Trans-Pacific Partnership.”  The agreement principally reduces trade restrictions for exports, and also attempts to crack down on intellectual property violations in pacific-rim nations.  Despite including roughly 40% of the world’s Gross Domestic Product, however, the deal is notably missing China, Asia’s largest economy.  Some see the deal as a tactic to reduce Asian-pacific dependence on the world’s second largest economy, while others see China’s economic clout as too significant for the deal to truly change the region’s trade dynamic.