"The negotiation on the TPP has been concluded but the TPP still needs to be ratified by the government. And one of the reasons why ABAC writes to all of the leaders of APEC encouraging them to move as quickly as they can for the ratification of the TPP is…. until the TPP is ratified and comes into force, the governments won't turn their attention to FTAAP," Rod Eddington told a press conference.
Eddington reminded that several of important economies are not part of TPP, but would be part of FTAAP.
"Until that is done, we would not be able to make a real headway to FTAAP," Eddington said.
The Beijing-backed FTAAP is one of the main topics at the Manila meeting. It is regarded as an alternative to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which comprises 12 Pacific Rim countries and notably excludes China and Russia.
Negotiations on the precise wording of the TPP document was finalized last month between members, including the United States, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.