September 10, 2022
AAIP Comments on IPEF Launch
AAIP welcomes the announcement of the launch of Indo-Pacific Economic Framework negotiations. We are committed to working with the U.S. and other IPEF governments to advance this initiative and to ensure that it delivers concrete outcomes for members’ citizens, workers, and businesses. We hope the IPEF can lead to a comprehensive free trade agreement that will deliver even greater economic and strategic benefits.
To ensure IPEF’s success, AAIP urges the U.S. and other governments to:
- Pursue ambitious commitments: The IPEF should build on existing trade agreements, such as the U.S.- Mexico Canada Agreement and other high-standard 21st-century agreements. It should include new issues that reflect changes in the global economy and technology since this last generation of trade agreements was concluded.
- Promote seamless trade and investment: The IPEF should adopt transparent rules and standards and eliminate behind-the-border barriers. It should also establish common approaches to emerging challenges, including digital governance, supply chain resilience, and climate transition, that will facilitate trade, investment, and innovation.
- Reduce policy uncertainty: Businesses make trade and investment decisions based on economic agreements, so any agreement must include clear and concrete rules and standards. All countries should meet the same standards to promote regional competitiveness, interoperability, and the development of an IPEF trade and investment platform, even as some countries may need longer timeframes and capacity building to fully implement select commitments.
- Continually engage with the private sector: Consultations with businesses, particularly those engaged in the region, are vital to making this agreement a success. Business knowledge on the ground in areas such as the digital economy and supply chain resilience is key to making the IPEF workable.
- Move with urgency and flexibility: Governments should seek to conclude negotiations expeditiously and consider early harvest outcomes where possible, including digital trade. IPEF members should leave open the possibility of negotiating market access and other commitments not initially envisioned.
AAIP will provide detailed, substantive recommendations in the coming weeks and looks forward to engaging with the U.S. and other IPEF governments on this important initiative.
The American Association of the Indo-Pacific (americanindopac.com) is a membership-led organization that works to strengthen American business and investment in the Indo-Pacific region. AAIP does this through policy initiatives, ongoing engagement with policymakers in Washington, D.C., and in the region, and close collaboration with other business associations. AAIP is legally registered in the United States as a 501c6 non-profit corporation. AAIP membership is only held by U.S.-headquartered companies and business associations.
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