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Senate Gives Trade Promotion Authority to Obama to Finalize Trans Pacific Partnership

August 07, 2015

Obama has been given power to negotiate trade deals after a bill was approved last month granting him “Fast Track approval”.

President Obama was granted “Fast Track approval” to negotiate trade deals after a bill was approved by the U.S. Senate on June 24th. With Fast Track approval, the U.S. gains much needed power to negotiate international free trade bargains.

More about the bill

The Fast Track Approval, otherwise known as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) will allow the president to:

  • Negotiate trade deals that Congress cannot change, only ratify or reject. No amendments or filibusters can be made by Congress members.
  • Finalize negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with Mexico, Canada, and Japan (among other countries). The TPP is a proposed regional regulatory and investment pact that 12 countries all over the Asia Pacific region have partaken in.
  • Reach broader markets to gain greater access for the trade of U.S. goods.

Reactions from lawmakers

Obama’s decision is generally supported by Republican lawmakers who believe U.S. products have come to a point where they need to reach broader markets. On the other hand, democrats generally believe that free trade deals jeopardize U.S. jobs and support countries that do not treat their workers fairly. Some expect that new U.S. trade deals are inevitable in the final months of Obama’s presidency, however.

Questions? Contact any member of our Global Tax Services Group.

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