AAIP Press Statement
AAIP commends IPEF progress, remains critical over delays on Trade Pillar
[The following statement is attributable to Jackson Cox, Interim President, AAIP]
San Francisco, November 16, 2023 — The American Association of the Indo-Pacific (AAIP) commends the progress made in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) negotiations this week at the IPEF Ministerial in San Francisco.
The completion of agreements on three pillars – Supply Chain Resiliency, Clean Economy, and Fair Economy – is a significant moment for economic collaboration and integration in the Indo-Pacific region.
AAIP acknowledges the efforts of all IPEF partners to date. The Supply Chain Resiliency agreement signed this week lays the foundation for a new approach to trade in goods. The now complete agreements on the Clean Economy and Fair Economy pillars demonstrate a shared commitment to sustainable development and equitable financial practices.
AAIP especially applauds the legally binding anti-corruption measures within the Fair Economy pillar and the establishment of an annual investment forum under the Clean Economy pillar. These initiatives will enhance investment conditions and drive collective efforts toward a sustainable and equitable economic future.
These pillars, together with the establishment of the IPEF Council, signify a forward-looking approach to regional cooperation.
AAIP is nonetheless disappointed by the lack of progress on the Trade pillar. The inability to finalize this pillar represents a significant missed opportunity. The United States’ trading partners are rightly concerned that U.S. domestic politics will continue to impede American economic engagement in the region. U.S. lawmakers must understand that economic liberalization is continuing across the Indo-Pacific region, and the U.S. will remain on the sidelines until this changes.
However, the delays also present a chance for AAIP to deepen its engagement in Washington, D.C., and within the region to advance opportunities on a range of issues that still require urgent attention, from digital trade, AI standards, intellectual property rights, and trade liberalization to name a few. AAIP will continue to support the realization of this approach.
AAIP once again stresses institutionalizing the role of the U.S. private sector in consultation, negotiation, and implementation. The private sector’s active involvement and collaboration are imperative to ensure the effectiveness of any agreement. AAIP is ready to contribute actively to this process, demonstrating the high utility and impact of these collaborations.
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About the American Association of the Indo-Pacific (AAIP)
The American Association of the Indo-Pacific (AAIP) is a membership-led organization that works to strengthen American business and investment in the Indo-Pacific region. AAIP achieves this through policy initiatives, ongoing engagement with policymakers in Washington, D.C., and the region, and close collaboration with other business associations. AAIP is registered in the United States as a 501c6 non-profit corporation, and its membership is held exclusively by U.S.-headquartered companies and business associations.