KUALA LUMPUR: Following the announcement by the United States (US) on its withdrawal from the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), Malaysia and the 10-other members will hold a meeting to discuss the next course of action on the world’s largest trade deal.
Second Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said the 11 countries, excluding the US, were talking to each other.
“Twelve countries signed the TPPA, but now one, wants out. The other 11 can continue by making change to the clauses.
“There are many possibilities that these 11 countries can still proceed with,” he added.
He told reporters this after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Malaysia External Trade Development Corp and China Intercontinental Communication Co Ltd in Kuala Lumpur on Monday.
Newly-elected US President Donald Trump had after his inauguration announced the country’s trade strategy, which included withdrawal from the TPPA.
Ong said if the US closed its door to trade activities, it would have a negative impact on the world’s economic development.
This is the biggest concern that Malaysia and the TPPA’s members should address, he added.
“The US is having a new policy (closed-door policy to trade) which contradicts what it had adopted in the past.
“The US was the one encouraging free trade. Suddenly, it is now trying to stop it. There’s a possibility this would trigger retaliation by a number of other countries,” Ong added. - Bernama