No final deal in TPP trade talks: negotiators

No final deal in TPP trade talks: negotiators

Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari (left) and US Trade Representative Michael Froman participate in a press conference in Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, on Saturday. (Reuters photo)
Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari (left) and US Trade Representative Michael Froman participate in a press conference in Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, on Saturday. (Reuters photo)

WASHINGTON - Delegates negotiating a huge Pacific free-trade agreement said they have failed to reach a final deal after several days of intense talks in Hawaii, in a setback to US President Barack Obama.

But US Trade Representative Michael Froman, in a statement on behalf of the 12 countries involved, insisted that "significant progress" had been made on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement.

"After more than a week of productive meetings we've made significant progress and will continue on resolving a limited number of remaining issues, paving the way for the conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations," said Froman.

Protestors gather on the beach near the hotel where the Trans-Pacific Partnership meeting is being held in Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, on Wednesday. (Reuters photo)

The negotiators were "more confident than ever that TPP is within reach," he said, adding that the Pacific Rim countries involved would continue to have bilateral discussions to try and iron out their remaining differences.

The failure to hammer out the final details of the accord are a blow to Obama because it means the TPP could become election fodder as the United States gets set to enter election season.

The TPP is the most ambitious trade deal in decades, a vast free-trade bloc encompassing 40% of the world's economy and part of Obama's much-vaunted "rebalance" towards Asia in the face of an increasingly assertive China.


Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (12)

India rescuers hunt for survivors as landslide toll hits 45

MUMBAI: Rescuers in India combed through mud and debris Saturday in a desperate search for survivors as the death toll from multiple monsoon-triggered landslides climbed to 45, according to officials.

11:45

53 isolation centres on way

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration plans to open 53 community isolation centres by early next month for Covid-infected people awaiting hospital admission, city governor Aswin Kwanmuang said on Friday.

11:00

Charles and Diana's 'wedding of the century'

PARIS: Their fairy-tale marriage 40 years ago this month was dubbed the "wedding of the century".

10:45