On December 7, 2011, the US Trade Representative (USTR) issued Federal Register notices asking for public comments on Japan, Canada, and Mexico joining Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. Written comments are due by noon on January 13, 2012.

The USTR seeks comments on agriculture, services, and manufacturing trade issues, including non-tariff barriers. The USTR also seeks comments on the possible economic effect on US producers and consumers from reduction of trade barriers with the three countries.

In November 2011, Japan, Canada, and Mexico signaled their interest in joining TPP negotiations, which aim to eliminate or reduce trade barriers among the TPP parties. The Obama administration welcomed the countries’ interest. 

TPP negotiations currently include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam and the United States. The Obama administration expects TPP parties to conclude negotiations on an agreement in 2012. 

US companies with interests in these countries and sectors should consider filing comments to be certain their views are known to the US Government. 

For more information about the TPP or other international trade issues, please contact Timothy J. Keeler, Tiffany L. Smith, or Dave M. Wharwood.

Learn more about our Global Trade practice.