The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a trade agreement among twelve Pacific Rim countries signed on 4 February 2016 in Auckland, New Zealand, after seven years of negotiations, which has not entered into force. The 30 chapters of the TPP Agreement concern many matters of public policy and a stated goal to "promote economic growth; support the creation and retention of jobs; enhance innovation, productivity and competitiveness; raise living standards; reduce poverty in our countries; and promote transparency, good governance, and enhanced labor and environmental protections." Among other things, the Agreement contains measures to lower trade barriers such as tariffs, and establish an investor-state dispute settlement mechanism (but states can opt out from tobacco-related measures). The United States government has considered the TPP as the companion agreement to the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a broadly similar agreement between the United States and the European Union.
Historically, the TPP is an expansion of the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (TPSEP or P4), which was signed by Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, and Singapore in 2005. Beginning in 2008, additional countries joined the discussion for a broader agreement: Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, the United States, and Vietnam, bringing the total number of participating countries in the negotiations to twelve. Current trade agreements between participating countries, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement, will be reduced to those provisions that do not conflict with the TPP, or that provide greater trade liberalization than the TPP.
Participating nations aimed at completing negotiations in 2012, but contentious issues such as agriculture, intellectual property, and services and investments prolonged negotiations. They finally reached agreement on 5 October 2015. Implementing the TPP has been one of the trade agenda goals of the Obama administration in the US. On 5 October 2015 Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper expected "signatures on the finalized text and deal early in the new year, and ratification over the next two years." A version of the text of the treaty "Subject to Legal Review (...) for Accuracy, Clarity and Consistency" was made public on 5 November 2015, the same day President Obama notified Congress that he intends to sign it.
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INITIAL PROVISIONS AND GENERAL DEFINITIONS
Section A: Initial Provisions
Article 1.1: Establishment of a Free Trade Area
The Parties, consistent with Article XXIV of GATT 1994 and Article V of
GATS, hereby establish a free trade area in accordance with the provisions of this
Article 1.2: Relation to Other Agreements
Recognising the Parties’ intention for this Agreement to coexist with their
existing international agreements, each Party affirms:
in relation to existing international agreements to which all Parties
are party, including the WTO Agreement, its existing rights and
obligations with respect to the other Parties; and
in relation to existing international agreements to which that Party
and at least one other Party are party, its existing rights and
obligations with respect to that other Party or Parties, as the case
If a Party considers that a provision of this Agreement is inconsistent with
a provision of another agreement to which it and at least one other Party are party,
on request, the relevant Parties to the other agreement shall consult with a view to
reaching a mutually satisfactory solution. This paragraph is without prejudice to a
Party’s rights and obligations under Chapter 28 (Dispute Settlement).1
For the purposes of application of this Agreement, the Parties agree that the fact that an
agreement provides more favourable treatment of goods, services, investments or persons than that
provided for under this Agreement does not mean that there is an inconsistency within the meaning
of paragraph 2.
Section B: General Definitions
Article 1.3: General Definitions
For the purposes of this Agreement, unless otherwise provided in this
AD Agreement means the Agreement on Implementation of Article VI of the
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994, set out in Annex 1A to the WTO