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Discus welcomes TPP trade agreement

The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (Discus) has welcomed the conclusion of initial negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a free-trade agreement between Pacific Rim nations.

Discus has welcomed the new TPP agreement - although it now needs to be ratified by all 12 member countries.
Discus has welcomed the new TPP agreement – although it now needs to be ratified by all 12 member countries.

The US, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam, Singapore, New Zealand, Brunei and Chile have all signed the trade agreement, which will see more than 18,000 tariffs on American products reduced to zero.

Minimum standards for the protection of workers, the environment and intellectual properly also form part of the agreement, which covers countries accounting for around 40% of the world’s economy.

In a statement, Discus says it has “welcomed” the conclusion of TPP negotiations. The Council generally supports trade agreements which open markets for US spirits.

“We applaud the tireless efforts of the US negotiating team to secure this historic agreement, and we look forward to reviewing the details of the agreement as soon as they are made available,” said Christine LoCascio, senior vice president, international trade and an official advisor to the Office of the United States Trade Representative, which negotiated the TPP.

“American spirits are in the midst of a global boom with US brands from both large and small distillers exported to as many as 130 countries around the world.  Comprehensive and market-opening trade deals create jobs, grow the economy and are good policy for the United States.”

According to Discus, global US spirits exports were valued at over $1.5 billion in 2014, representing the sixth straight year of record exports.

While many trade bodies welcome the TPP agreement, others have criticised the secretive nature of the negotiations. All 12 TPP countries still need to ratify the agreement at home.

In August the EU announced a trade deal with Vietnam which was widely welcomed by the trade.

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