Japan wants a massive trade deal without the US — but these countries stand in its way

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe next to a map of the original Trans-Pacific Partnership participating countries. [TOSHIFUMI KITAMURA / AFP / Getty Images]

 

  • Negotiators from the 11 remaining TPP countries are holding talks this week on how to ink a deal without Washington, but internal divisions are a key obstacle
  • Vietnam and Malaysia, in particular, are looking to re-open discussions on certain provisions, complicating Japan’s desire to cement an agreement

As the 11 remaining Trans-Pacific Partnership countries continue talks without Washington this week, certain member states now need convincing to stay on board with the massive trade deal. Continue reading

The Coming China-Germany Trade Juggernaut

 

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In a post-American trade war, this emerging bloc will wield devastating power.

Stories of international angst over United States President Donald Trump’s protectionist approach are becoming more commonplace. Mr. Trump’s “buy American, hire American” catchphrase sounds good for many at home, but abroad, it is prompting a weighty reorganization of international trade relationships. And long term, the result will be a trade war that will prove ruinous to the U.S.

World trade has changed a great deal over the last several decades. The international community at large no longer depends on America’s giant import expenditures and exports. Parag Khanna of Politico wrote:

As Americans, it’s easy to assume that global trade still depends on America as the consumer of last resort. But that’s no longer true. In fact, the majority of trade in emerging-market nations is with each other, not with the U.S. In 1990, emerging economies sent 65 percent of their exports to developed nations like the U.S. and Europe, and only 35 percent to other developing countries. Today, that figure is nearly reversed. Continue reading

China eyes global economic leadership as U.S. turns inward

In this photo taken Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016, Kenyan laborers and a Chinese foreman work to finish the construction of an existing bridge that goes across a corner of Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya. A controversial Chinese-built railway project involving an even larger 6km bridge that would go all the way over the beloved protected area in Kenya’s capital has divided conservationists in this East African country. (Photo: Ben Curtis, AP)

 

This year, a 300-mile railway will begin slicing through Kenya, cutting travel time between the capital, Nairobi, and one of East Africa’s largest ports, Mombasa, from 12 to four hours and breeding hopes of an economic and tourism revival in the region.

The country’s most significant transportation project since its independence in 1963 is being built courtesy of China.  China Road and Bridge, a state-owned enterprise, leads construction of the $13.8 billion project, which is financed nearly 100% by the Export-Import Bank of China.

The railroad is one of a host of infrastructure projects China spearheads around the world in an ambitious quest to reinforce its emergence as the world’s next economic superpower while President Trump turns his back on globalization. Continue reading

White House Prepares For Trade War, Warns US “Will Not Be Bound By WTO Decisions”

In the latest warning from the White House that it is set to unleash trade policy that will be in sharp conflict with generally accepted trade norms, most likely a reference to some form of Border Adjustment Tax, the Trump administration has warned that the U.S. isn’t and won’t bound by decisions made at the World Trade Organization, in outlining a new trade agenda that “promises to root out unfair practices by foreign countries” and to escalate what are already simmering trade conflicts. Continue reading

Ron Paul Warns: “Second Financial Bubble Going To Burst Soon… Even Trump Can’t Stop It”

 

By all appearances notes SHTFPlan.com’s Mac Slavo, President Trump is doing his damnedest to turn around the economy, revitalize jobs and bring back prosperity. But the larger trends are already in place; the cycle is turning, and the bust cannot be put off forever.

Federal Reserve policy has literally set the country up for collapse, and though the central bank has been very creative in making the impossible work, and putting off disaster, nothing can hold back the flood forever.

Unfortunately, it looks like Trump may be blamed for a financial crisis that he didn’t cause. Analysts, including notably Brandon Smith, may be correct in pinpointing the attempt to use the new and highly controversial president as a scapegoat for the dirty work of the bankers.

The conditions are there, and the consequences were built in when the bubble was still being pumped up. Someday it will burst. When, how, and how bad remains to be seen.

If former Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) is correct, an Economic Doomsday is here. The second financial bubble is going to soon burst, and there’s nothing anyone can do about it. That’s because, as Paul stated, the Federal Reserve has set up the American economy for financial collapse for printing trillions of dollars back in 2008 and 2009. Continue reading

China eyes ‘The Art of War’ as Trump signals battle on trade

There’s a Chinese saying that stems from the philosophy in Sun Tzu’s ancient text “The Art of War”: You can kill 1,000 enemies, but you would also lose 800 soldiers.

Centuries later, the proverb is suddenly apt again, being mentioned frequently in discussions around Beijing. Now, it highlights the potential damage U.S. President-elect Donald Trump could inflict if he makes good on his threat to start a trade war with China, the world’s second-biggest economy.

Having backed off some other campaign pledges, it’s unclear if Trump will end up slapping punitive tariffs on China — and Beijing has signaled some optimism he will be more pragmatic in office. Still, the message from China is that any move to tax Chinese imports would bring retaliation: The U.S. economy would take a hit and America would damage its long-standing ties with Asia. Continue reading

China is ready to pounce if Trump axes Pacific trade deal

If Donald Trump turns his back on Asian economies, China is ready and willing to step into the vacuum.

During the election campaign, Trump blasted international trade deals, tapping intoa deep well of popular anger over the effects of globalization. Now, President-elect Trump’s first victim could be the huge Pacific trade agreement that he slammed as a “disaster done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country.”

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was a key plank of President Obama’s push to boost U.S. influence in Asia. But now it looks doomed, with Congress refusing to ratify it and Trump having vowed to kill it. Continue reading

Obama Gives Kitchen Sink Away to Vietnam

On the subject of Vietnam, many folks still have very definitive thoughts about that communist country. I for one have a personal reflection in that my older brother served there as a Marine Infantryman in Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment, and was wounded at Khe Sahn. My father-in-law also served in Vietnam as an Army Infantryman in the 23d American Division. So I was kinda paying close attention to President Obama’s visit to another communist country – too bad they don’t play baseball there (or dance the tango). And of course, Obama made a point of taking pictures in front of a bust of Ho Chi Minh – a similar photo op as he had in front of Che Guevara.

But that wasn’t the only questionable thing – this is after all Barack Hussein Obama. Continue reading

Germany’s Leading Role

BERLIN/CIUDAD DE MÉXICO (Own report) – Following her talks yesterday with Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto in Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that Germany will strengthen its partnership with Mexico. It will train members of the police and armed forces and enhance economic cooperation with that country. Mexico, traditionally, has been one of the German companies’ two most important trading partners in Latin America. Particularly German automobile companies use Mexico as a low-wage production site for the lucrative US market. Cooperation now will also be strengthened with the military and in the field of domestic repression. This must be seen in the context of the gradual polarization on both shores of the Pacific, as Western powers and their allies take up positions in opposition to the People’s Republic of China, while several governments, which had refused to bow to western hegemony, have been recently either voted out of office or are threatened with being ousted. Berlin is offensively supporting those forces, cooperating with the West – such as Mexico, whose President Peña Nieto, in turn, explicitly recognizes Germany’s “leading role.”

Continue reading

The Trans-Pacific Partnership: Death of Western Sovereignty

(TRUNEWS) On February 4, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is set for formal signature in New Zealand.

The TPP is a global version of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which has been negotiated in secret for the last seven years and would place centralized regulation on 40 percent of the world’s economy.

NAFTA and GATT had a catastrophic effect on U.S. business competitiveness, and domestic export values, upon implementation in the 90’s, a trend the TPP is likely to follow. Continue reading

Are We Now Buying the Rope On Which We Will Hang?

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The idea was that America was so corrupted and so greedy that we would eventually disregard our own national security in pursuit of a short-term profit. Ironically, it turned out that the Soviet system died under the weight of its own corruption. Communists, at least in practice rather than theory, tend to be just as greedy (if not more so) than capitalists. The Soviet Union is gone and America remains.

What Lenin may have missed is that America’s sin of greed is perhaps overshadowed by our gluttony. Yes, greed was at work in the last downturn but so was overconsumption. As a nation, we are at least as guilty in our buying habits as we are in our selling. One example is that the nation has about $19 trillion in Federal government debt, not to mention unfunded liabilities valued in the $100s of trillions, or private debt which is much greater than GDP already. From one view, this enormous quantity of debt could be the rope with which we hang. We buy goods and services from China and they claim the debt we incur to them is a weapon they can use against us. But that is just one example. Continue reading

It’s not checkmate yet: Beijing to counter US-led Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact

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China to speed up talks on regional accord in face of landmark Trans-Pacific Partnership deal

China will seek to quicken the pace of its free-trade negotiations with other Asia-Pacific economies to counter a mammoth Washington-led trade pact in the region, observers say.

The United States and 11 other countries that in total make up 40 per cent of the world’s economy scored a landmark Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal in Atlanta on Monday.

Continue reading

Leaked TISA Documents Reveal Privacy Threat

Under the draft provisions of the latest trade deal to be leaked by Wikileaks, countries could be barred from trying to control where their citizens’ personal data is held or whether it’s accessible from outside the country.

Wikileaks has released 17 documents relating to the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), currently under negotiation between the US, the European Union and 23 other nations. These negotiating texts are supposed to remain secret for five years after TISA is finalized and brought into force. Continue reading

Pacific trade deal: Fast-track measure will pass ‘this week’, McConnell says

Majority leader praises President Obama over Trans-Pacific Partnership as Congressman Paul Ryan suggests momentum will carry to House

Republican majority leader Mitch McConnell said on Sunday the Senate will pass “fast-track” authority to negotiate major trade deals this week, despite opposition to the measure from many of President Barack Obama’s fellow Democrats.

“Yes, we’ll pass it. We’ll pass it later this week,” McConnell said in an interview with ABC. Continue reading

AIIB a means for China to achieve ‘Belt and Road’

China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) initiative is a means to achieve its goal of bolstering regional integration and connectivity through its “Belt and Road” strategy, Lu Chung-ta, director of investments and marketing at Shin Kong Investment Trust Co.

The establishment of the AIIB is widely regarded as an effort by China to create an international financial institution that rivals the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Asia Development Bank and curb the US’s leading position in global financial decision-making bodies in the post-World War II era. Continue reading