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The largest global trade agreement in 20 years, the TPP would have included the United States, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. It was championed by former President Barack Obama as a way to open Asian markets for American goods and create a trade bloc to counter China.
Opposition to the TPP was one of the key planks of Trump’s presidential campaign, with the billionaire businessman calling the trade pact a “potential disaster” for the US. He said he would prefer bilateral trade deals with individual TPP countries instead. Monday’s executive order signaled the new administration’s determination to address its priorities quickly.
Vietnam backed out of the pact in November, citing uncertainty created by Trump’s election and the refusal of the US Congress to ratify the TPP.
Trump has also targeted the North American Free Trade Association, which eliminated commercial barriers between the US, Canada and Mexico during the Clinton administration.