(Photo: Arindambanerjee / Shutterstock.com)
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Opponents of the Trans-Pacific Partnership are raising their voices just as multiple industries in the United States applaud US trade negotiators for reaching an agreement on the trade pact.
R-CALF USA expressed its opposition to the deal because it believes the TPP — and other trade agreements before it — are unbalanced and add to the US trade deficit.
“There is nothing novel about this TPP agreement. It does not embrace the principles that livestock producers, manufacturers and workers have suggested,” Bill Bullard, R-CALF CEO, said in a statement. “Instead, it follows the same blueprint as the free trade agreements we already have with 20 countries and those agreements resulted in a $2.3 billion deficit in the trade of cattle, beef, beef variety meats and processed beef last year alone. This TPP is a NAFTA and CAFTA look-alike and will most likely worsen the $28 billion deficit we accumulated over the past 25 years with those and the other free trade-agreement countries.”
The Coalition for a Prosperous America, which counts R-CALF among its supporters, said the TPP will “harm American job creation, agricultural and goods production and our economic prosperity.” CPA argued that the TPP holds no economic benefit for the US for a variety of reasons.
“The US economy alone is 60 percent of the TPP countries total gross domestic product (GDP) or economic size,” CPA said in a statement. “We have existing and poorly performing trade agreements with seven TPP countries that consist of another 20 percent of the TPP economic size. Those countries are Canada, Mexico, Peru, Singapore, Peru, Chile and Australia. As a result, we are not “opening trade” with 80 percent of the TPP countries. Instead, the TPP is a trade agreement on top of existing trade agreements.”
The group added that there is little reason to expect any net exports gain from other countries participating in the TPP. Japan, for example, cannot substantially increase purchases of US goods, CPA said because of the devalued yen and weak purchasing power of Japanese consumers.
“Japan operates a nationalistic, partially closed economy strategy,” CPA added. “They grew from post-World War II depression based upon net exports and spurring diverse industry growth under government strategic planning. The country will not change to become a net importer of US goods after signing the TPP deal.”
Opposition to the TPP also is growing abroad. Canada’s opposition New Democratic Party claims the TPP will hurt the Canada’s auto, healthcare and dairy industries among many others. NPD Leader Thomas Mulcair stated a Canadian government led by the NPD would not consider itself bound by the TPP. Canadian press reports suggest that the announcement most likely will elevate the TPP as a major issue leading up elections in Canada, which are less than two weeks away.