Patrick Gower: Jacinda Ardern helps keep TPP alive

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has made her first real move in international affairs - giving New Zealand's backing to continuing on with the TPP in an attempt to salvage a trade deal.

It was thought to be all over just 24 hours ago after Canada pulled out of talks on Friday night. Now, with just hours to go at APEC, Ms Arden is part of a group trying to resurrect the deal under a new name.

The first version of the TPP died when the US pulled out.

Then the US-free version - called TPP11 - fell over sensationally when Canada's Justin Trudeau boycotted a meeting of leaders who were ready to sign it off.

But yet another version is back again with a new name - the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership - the CPTPP.

Ms Ardern has given this third version New Zealand's support, meaning Labour is now proponents of keeping the deal alive.

"The Comprehensive Progressive Trans-Pacific Agreement is a different agreement than what TPP12 was," Ms Ardern says.

Yes, Ms Ardern's message to New Zealanders is that the TPP is not dead.

"That's certainly what we've come away from last night with the understanding of again after such dramatic movement," she says.

"I wouldn't want to give any hard and fast but certainly after last night, there has been some consensus among TPP nations."

The worry for Ms Ardern is that supporters on the left who don't like TPP will feel betrayed - she can no longer portray Labour as just passively having to sign off what was negotiated.

APEC is a conference full of problems and of opportunities for its leaders.