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Friday, October 9, 2015
The Trans-Pacific Partnership: a Latin-American perception
This week a significant trade agreement has been signed by
twelve Nations around the Pacific Ocean. At the heart of this pact there is the
willingness to lower the trade barriers that affect good and services within
this enormous region.
Countries that have approved the Trans-Pacific Partnership
agreement are: Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam,
Brunei, Vietnam, Chile, Singapore and United States. A most curious fact is the
non-involvement of a substantial economic power in the Pacific area such as
China. The main official reason was that China would not accept new standards
in trade and investment that the treaty wants to follow. Experts have argued
that the purpose if the agreement is to neutralize the big Asian country.
Nevertheless, an outstanding figure materializes while
analyzing that these twelve signatory members together represent 40% of the
global economy. Another fact that has called my attention is that there few
Latin-American Countries that adhered to it, only accepting the agreement were:
Chile, Peru and Mexico.
Latin-American presence is characterized mainly by
countries that jointly form a regional trade bloc named the Pacific Alliance,
Colombia the fourth country is not yet part of the T-PP although it is considering
to be part of it. After the creation of the Pacific Alliance in June 2012,
which pursues a free trade or at least lowering trade barriers, two main trade
agreements divide the region in a virtually vertical line from North to South.
In contradiction to the Pacific Alliance we can notice the existence of the
Mercosur. Formed in 1991 Mercosur has not done a relevant effort to promote its inter-regional interaction with other world market. However, through the years it
has created an endless number of bureaucratic organisms in order to maintain a seemingly
The presence of three of the Pacific Alliance’s nations
that sanctioned the new Trans-Pacific Agreement once more reveals the difference
between Latin-American postures towards the openness of global trade.