TPP-11 trade pact may take effect in Jan 2019: Japan’s minister

TOKYO, Oct. 17 ― Japan’s Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi has said the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) without the United States, known as TPP-11, will likely come into force as early as January 2019.

“The TPP-11 should take effect soon as six countries are set to complete their domestic ratification processes in November,” Motegi said at a Oct. 16 press conference, after meeting ambassadors from the 10 countries in Tokyo.

The minister expects early ratification by mid-November, when the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit takes place in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

The TPP-11 trade pact will enter into force 60 days after six of the remaining 11 countries of the TPP have ratify the agreement, a process that involves amending their respective domestic laws.

Japan, Mexico and Singapore have ratified it. Australia, New Zealand, and Vietnam are in the final stage to pass legislation as early as November.

The move may coincide with the timing of the Japan-EU free trade agreement to be expected to come into force in early 2019. The deal with Japan is the EU’s largest trade deal ever and will create a trade zone covering nearly a third of global GDP.

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