TPP trade deal will continue without Trump

An anti-TPP protestor Image copyright TIMOTHY A. CLARY
Image caption The controversial trade pact was dealt a blow when the US ditched the deal

Asia-Pacific trade ministers have agreed to resuscitate the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, despite US President Donald Trump abandoning it.

Mr Trump signalled in January he would block the passage of the 12-nation pact in order to protect American jobs.

Trade ministers from the 11 remaining countries have met in Vietnam to get the deal back on track.

The representatives also agreed to help the US rejoin the deal at any time.

The bid to revive the TPP, which would have covered 40% of the global economy, was led by trade ministers from Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

New Zealand trade minister Todd McClay said the remaining countries "are committed to finding a way forward to deliver" the deal.

Door still open

Although the door will be kept open for the US to rejoin the pact, its trade representative Robert Lighthizer said it would not return to the TPP.

"The United States pulled out of the TPP and it's not going to change that decision."

"The president made a decision, that I certainly agree with, that bilateral negotiations are better for the United States than multilateral negotiations."

The remaining 11 countries pushing on with the deal are Japan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei.

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