IGI | INSIDE GLOBAL ISSUES
Policy Brief No. 201648
September 29, 2016
US’ hardliner stance on trade will shift post-election
Trade has long been a factor in US presidential campaigns. During the first US presidential debate on Monday, candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump discussed various issues including prosperity, America's direction and security. Both candidates addressed trade agreements in the beginning of the debate. Trump has said that the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has taken US manufacturing jobs, and that the future Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would cause a similar disaster, and advocated a renegotiation of the US' trade deals. During the debate Clinton stated she held all trade deals that came before her "to the same test" in terms of Americans' interests and voted against the multinational Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA).
The TPP originally appeared to give a push to TTIP negotiations, which could potentially stall if the TPP is shelved. Presently, when looking at the progress of WTO negotiations, policy coordination on trade and investment in the Group of 20 (G20), there has been an increasingly unstable balance among various sides in terms of interests. Competition between China and US on regional trade agreements is still intense - negotiations over the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), in which China participates, are speeding up, and plans to establish a number of FTAs along with the Belt and Road initiative are gradually unfolding.