07:11 GMT19 September 2020
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    Japan is not considering Australia's proposal of revising the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade agreement, and regards it as futile without the United States' participation, Japanese Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda said on Tuesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Monday, US President Donald Trump signed an order withdrawing the United States from the TTP free trade agreement, fulfilling his campaign promises. Following the announcement, Australia has been seeking to reformulate the deal, possibly offering China the opportunity to join the partnership.

    "Without the US, the TPP pact is meaningless as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has clearly said… The fundamental balance of interests is lost without the US," Hagiuda told reporters at the Prime Minister’s Office, as quoted by the Japan Times newspaper.

    Hagiuda added that, for now, Japan was "not thinking about an action with 11 countries" to push for a TPP without the United States, adding that Tokyo will continue to urge Washington to rejoin the partnership.

    The TPP seeks to remove barriers to trade among its 12 signatories, which together account for 40 percent of the world's economy: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam.

    For the TPP to take effect, at least six countries that account for 85 percent or more of the combined gross domestic product (GDP) of the 12 members should ratify the pact. This means, that at present, the agreement cannot come into force, as the United States accounts for about 60 percent of the GDP of the member countries. A renegotiation will be required if a new country is invited into the partnership.

    Japan has the second largest economy among the 12 countries, accounting for 17.7 percent of total GDP.


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