Negotiations around the Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade agreement have stretched on for years, but have taken the spotlight in the 2016 race for the White House. The deal, which involves the U.S. and 11 other Pacific Rim nations, would create a free-trade zone and, as advocates argue, would help America increase exports and create more jobs.
UPS (NYSE:UPS) CEO David Abney is one of those advocates. In an interview on the FOX Business Network’s Cavuto: Coast-to-Coast, Abney explained why he’s publically throwing his support behind the deal.
“It’s going to create jobs, it’s going to create opportunities, it’s good for companies, employees, and our country,” he said.
He said those who compare TPP to the North American Free Trade Agreement have to keep in mind the trade deals were negotiated at very different points in history – and there are elements of TPP that he sees as helping the U.S. economy.
“NAFTA was 20 years ago. TPP is a 21st Century agreement that is tailored,” the UPS CEO explained. “E-commerce really wasn’t something that was on the table back them. E-commerce crosses borders all the time daily.”
Abney added that small businesses would also benefit from TPP’s passage and argued it would create more jobs than it would take away from the U.S. economy.
“The U.S. International Trade Commission said it would be positive from a financial standpoint, that it would increase exports and that it would increase jobs. You have to remember 95% of the world’s consumers live outside the U.S. We need to embrace that future; we need to address that 95% of market opportunity,” he said.
Further, Abney said his decision to back TPP is not only based on his own feelings about the deal, but feedback he’s hearing from UPS customers.
“Our customers are telling us that barriers to trade are keeping them from being competitive internationally. That’s why we’re pushing this agreement because we hear it loud and clear from our customers,” Abney said.