The U.S. International Trade Commission has opened an investigation to assess the likely impact of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement on the U.S. economy, specific industry sectors and American consumers. The investigation was requested November 5 by the U.S. Trade Representative, the same day that President Obama informed Congress that he intends to enter into the agreement.
The Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 requires the Commission to prepare a report that assesses the likely impact of TPP and present it to the President and Congress no more than 105 days after the President signs the Agreement. The President can sign the agreement 90 days after he notifies Congress, which he did on November 5.
The International Trade Commission will hold a public hearing January 13 in connection with the investigation, and written submissions also will be accepted for the record. IDFA is reviewing the details of the TPP Agreement and will decide, with input from members, whether to submit written comments by the February 15 deadline.
TPP is an agreement among 12 countries that would open new trade opportunities for dairy companies in the Asia-Pacific region. The other countries are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam.
Government Ag Committees Weigh In
Earlier this month, the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee (APAC) and six Agricultural Technical Advisory Committees (ATACs) released separate reports on TPP stating their opinions on the agreement. These committees are charged with advising the Secretary of Agriculture and the U.S. Trade Representative about a wide range of agricultural trade issues.
John Allan, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards, sits on the ATAC for Trade in Processed Foods. This committee’s report noted that a majority of the representatives support TPP but also pointed out several concerns, including disappointment that TPP “will not provide meaningful new access to the dairy markets of Japan and Canada.”
More details on the scope of the investigation and the procedures for written submissions are available on the USITC website.
Members with questions may contact Beth Hughes, IDFA director of international affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org.