TPP-11 officials set to meet in last negotiations before APEC

TOKYO, Oct. 25 — Negotiators from the remaining 11 members of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will meet for three days starting Oct. 30 in Urayasu city, near Tokyo, according to the Japanese government.

“We hope we will advance the talks toward reaching an agreement, while keeping the deal ambitious” said TPP Minister Toshimitsu Motegi at an Oct. 24 press conference.

The TPP-11 officials will again focus on narrowing the list of provisions that will be put on ice until the United States might return to the TPP.

Japan wants to cut the list by half from the current 50 requests.

If this is not possible, Japan hopes that the list can whittle down enough so an agreement can be finalized when the trade ministers meet at the sidelines of November’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Vietnam.

Yet, New Zealand’s incoming Labour Party-led government could hinder the negotiations if it demands to reopen the TPP deal or create a special clause for the nation.

NZ’s prime minister-elect Jacinda Ardern has said she will implement policies to ban foreign buyers from purchasing existing homes and renegotiate the TPP.

The NZ First Party, which has formed a coalition to govern with the Labour Party, also strongly opposes the inclusion of the so-called investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) provision in the TPP deal.

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