The Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Path to Free Trade in the Asia-Pacific

The Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Path to Free Trade in the Asia-Pacific

Edited by Peter C.Y. Chow

Mega-regionalism in the Asia Pacific has led to the formation of several emerging trade blocs, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership. This book, in addition to the examination of trade policies in the region, offers a comprehensive analysis of ongoing developments such as the impact of new members on the incumbent TPP-12 and its spillover to third parties, as well an objective study of the crucial issues of liberalization of agriculture, pharmaceuticals, and intellectual property rights.

Chapter 3: Wrestling over the Trans-Pacific Partnership: US strategic interests, China’s responses, and Taiwan’s membership options

Tun-Jen Cheng and Wei-Chin Lee

Subjects: asian studies, asian economics, economics and finance, asian economics, international economics, regional economics, politics and public policy, asian politics

Abstract

The United States has touted the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) as a trade framework to harmonize and homogenize regional trade practices for mutual benefit and as a key pillar of Washington’s rebalance of foreign policy toward Asia. China has perceived the TPP as an American trade scheme to gain economic advantage over China and as a strategic instrument for hegemonic rivalry. Lagging behind its trade competitor, South Korea, in the pursuit of free trade agreements, Taiwan has been doing its utmost to bid for membership in the TPP. A formidable hindrance to Taiwan’s joining the TPP is the omnipresent “China factor.” China has minimal tolerance for Taiwan’s presence in the international arena and for other countries’ assistance to Taiwan in attempting to secure its legitimate place in the international community. It seems that Taiwan stands a chance to enter the TPP, overcoming the China factor.

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