Malaysia’s government to review TPP commitment

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TPP-malaysia-protestMalaysia’s government has said it will review its commitment to the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement if studies it has commissioned find that the regional free trade agreement is “detrimental to sections of the Malaysian economy.”

Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said following stiff opposition by Malaysian groups, the government has commissioned two cost-benefit studies to weigh the pros and cons of Malaysia joining the TPP. He said the government will make a decision based on the findings of the two studies.

The studies will examine whether the TPP membership would harm the interests of Malaysian people and small and medium enterprises.

“If there are more worries and concerns despite the studies and engagement, the government will certainly revise our stand on the signing of the agreement,” Mustapa said.

The findings of the studies will be made public after the expected completion in November 2013.

“The findings of the two cost-benefit analysis will play a major role on what would be our final stand. I would also like to reiterate that we are not bound by any timeline, as far as the TPP is concerned,” the minister said.

However, in the meantime the government will remain committed to the negotiations for the TPP. But it gave assurance that Malaysia will not sign on the TPP “at the expense of national interest.”

Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad criticised the TPP and called it “a controlled trade pact designed to serve the interests of the US” and urged Malaysia to withdraw from the talks immediately.

The TPP negotiation was started in 2010 as a free trade agreement between the US, Mexico, Canada, Peru, Chile, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam and Japan, aiming to create a market with a population of 800 million with a combined gross domestic product of $28 trillion.

The TPP consists of 29 chapters but local groups have opposed it as it is seen as compromising Malaysia ’s sovereignty as it allows disputes between investors and the state to be adjudicated by international courts, thus bypassing Malaysian courts. Another area in the TPP agreement which has received a lot of criticism is intellectual property rights where giant pharmaceutical multinational companies were asking for longer patent periods and a reduction in generic medications.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Malaysia’s government has said it will review its commitment to the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement if studies it has commissioned find that the regional free trade agreement is “detrimental to sections of the Malaysian economy.”

Reading Time: 2 minutes

TPP-malaysia-protestMalaysia’s government has said it will review its commitment to the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement if studies it has commissioned find that the regional free trade agreement is “detrimental to sections of the Malaysian economy.”

Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said following stiff opposition by Malaysian groups, the government has commissioned two cost-benefit studies to weigh the pros and cons of Malaysia joining the TPP. He said the government will make a decision based on the findings of the two studies.

The studies will examine whether the TPP membership would harm the interests of Malaysian people and small and medium enterprises.

“If there are more worries and concerns despite the studies and engagement, the government will certainly revise our stand on the signing of the agreement,” Mustapa said.

The findings of the studies will be made public after the expected completion in November 2013.

“The findings of the two cost-benefit analysis will play a major role on what would be our final stand. I would also like to reiterate that we are not bound by any timeline, as far as the TPP is concerned,” the minister said.

However, in the meantime the government will remain committed to the negotiations for the TPP. But it gave assurance that Malaysia will not sign on the TPP “at the expense of national interest.”

Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad criticised the TPP and called it “a controlled trade pact designed to serve the interests of the US” and urged Malaysia to withdraw from the talks immediately.

The TPP negotiation was started in 2010 as a free trade agreement between the US, Mexico, Canada, Peru, Chile, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam and Japan, aiming to create a market with a population of 800 million with a combined gross domestic product of $28 trillion.

The TPP consists of 29 chapters but local groups have opposed it as it is seen as compromising Malaysia ’s sovereignty as it allows disputes between investors and the state to be adjudicated by international courts, thus bypassing Malaysian courts. Another area in the TPP agreement which has received a lot of criticism is intellectual property rights where giant pharmaceutical multinational companies were asking for longer patent periods and a reduction in generic medications.

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