President Obama is standing by his position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal.
Obama, during a press conference on Tuesday with Singaporeâ€™s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, said despite bipartisan opposition, he is still in favor of the trade agreement between 12 countries (United States, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam, Chile, Brunei and New Zealand).
â€œWe are part of a global economyâ€”weâ€™re not reversing that,â€ Obama said. â€œIt canâ€™t be reversed because it is driven by technology and it is driven by travel and cargo containers and the fact that the demand for products inside of our country means we have to get some things from other places and our export sector is a huge contributor to jobs and our economic wellbeing.â€
He said, given the global economy, the benefits of TPP outweigh any faults.
â€œMost manufactured products now involve a global supply chain where parts are made in all corners of the globe and converge and then get assembled and packaged and sold. So the notion that weâ€™re going to pull that up root and branch is unrealisticâ€”point number one,â€ he said.
Obama admitted that evidence has shown that prior trade deals the U.S. has been involved with have â€œnot delivered on all benefits that were promised and had very localized costs.â€
â€œThere were communities that were hurt because plants moved out,â€ he said. â€œPeople lost jobs. Jobs were created because of those trade deals, but jobs were also lost. And people who experienced those losses, those communities, didnâ€™t get as much help as they needed to. And what is also true is as a consequence of globalization and automation. What youâ€™ve seen is laborâ€”workersâ€”losing leverage and capital being mobileâ€”being able to locate around the world. That has all contributed to growing inequality, both here in the United States, but in many advanced economies.â€
Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump both oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
During an interview with FOX Business Networkâ€™s Stuart Varney on Tuesday, Trump reiterated his opposition to TPP.
â€œThe biggest job-providing program would be to renegotiate NAFTA and not sign TPP,â€ Trump continued, â€œmy plan is to renegotiate NAFTA, make it either good or get out of NAFTA. I want to bring our jobs back.â€