How the United States Withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Benefits China

University of Pennsylvania Journal of Law and Public Affairs, 2019 Forthcoming

Ohio State Public Law Working Paper No. 451

32 Pages Posted: 7 Aug 2018  

Daniel C. K. Chow

Ohio State University College of Law

Ian Sheldon

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Agricultural, Environmental & Development Economics

William McGuire

University of Washington, Tacoma

Date Written: August 7, 2018

Abstract

Only days after his inauguration as U.S. President, Donald J. Trump withdrew the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a “mega” regional free trade agreement that would have established the world’s largest free trade zone. Although President Trump announced that the withdrawal was justified because the TPP was an unfair agreement, the Trump Administration seems to have ignored or been unaware of the negative consequences of the decision: (1) as a consequence of the U.S. withdrawal, China has achieved a major strategic advantage in Asia through its own rival free trade agreement and now will be able to write the rules for trade in Asia and possibly beyond; and (2) the TPP would have resulted in significant economic gains to the United States as supported by a large body of economic studies analyzed in this article. Although the U.S. withdrawal has harmed its own interests, the decision is reversible because the United States can rejoin the TPP. While the path to reentry seems smooth at the moment, there is urgency for U.S. action. Reentering the TPP could become much more difficult if China first joins as the United States will need the approval of all TPP members, including China, to rejoin.

Keywords: Trans-Pacific Partnership, International Trade Law, International Law, World Trade Organization, China

JEL Classification: K10, K20, K33

Suggested Citation

Chow, Daniel C. K. and Sheldon, Ian and McGuire, William, How the United States Withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Benefits China (August 7, 2018). University of Pennsylvania Journal of Law and Public Affairs, 2019 Forthcoming; Ohio State Public Law Working Paper No. 451. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3228007 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3228007

Daniel Chee King Chow (Contact Author)

Ohio State University College of Law ( email )

55 West 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
United States
614 292-0948 (Phone)
614 292-3202 (Fax)

Ian Sheldon

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Agricultural, Environmental & Development Economics ( email )

234 Agricultural Administration Building
2120 Fyffe Road
Columbus, OH 43210-1067
United States
614-292-2194 (Phone)

William McGuire

University of Washington, Tacoma ( email )

1900 Commerce Street
Tacoma, WA 98402-3100
United States

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