Conflicting reports over TPP agreement

  • 10/11/2017

New Zealand's Trade Minister has confirmed an agreement has not yet been reached on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal.

Japan's Economic Minister Toshimitsu Motegi said a "ministerial agreement" has been reached, comments backed by his Mexican counterpart.

But soon afterwards Canada's Minister for Trade Francois-Philippe Champagne said no agreement had been reached.

Despite reports, there is no agreement in principle on TPP," he tweeted.

Trade Minister David Parker has since told Reuters consensus has not been achieved, despite many countries wanting to finalise it this week.

Canada, whose economy is the second biggest among the TPP-11 after Japan, said on Wednesday it would not be rushed into a revived TPP deal.

After touching down in Da Nang, Vietnam just after midnight Thursday (NZ time) for the APEC Summit, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern met briefly with Mr Parker, who is representing New Zealand at the negotiating table.

"It's fair to say these negotiations are down to the wire and it's still not clear what the outcome will be," Ms Ardern said.

Discussions around investor-state dispute settlement clauses had been tough going and continue to be but New Zealand is persisting, she said.

"It's definitely coming to a head. There are a number of countries that do want to see a conclusion. It's hard to know whether or not you'd be able to maintain your ongoing negotiating position the longer it drags on."

Leaders hoped to be in a position to finalise the TPP-11 agreement when they meet on Friday night (NZ time).

If a deal has been reached, it is not clear yet which clauses ministers have agreed to scrap.

Ms Ardern also has four bilateral meetings scheduled with partner nations, including with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Japanese officials had earlier claimed attempts at late stage changes could cause the whole deal to collapse.

Ms Ardern will also meet with leaders of Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore before the TPP leaders' meeting.

Reuters / Newshub.