UK Joins Indo-Pacific Major Trade Block

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The CPTPP otherwise regarded as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership is a conglomerate of 11 different countries soon to include the UK. The partnership calls for 98% reduction in trade barriers described as tariffs or quotas among all member countries. All partners enjoy this enhanced trade potential across the trans-pacific with minimal restrictions. The partnership formed of 11 countries includes; Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and now the United Kingdom. The UK is the first member to join since the partnerships 2018 origin, as well as being the first European member within the group.

What Does This Mean for the UK?

Simply put, 99% of UK goods and services; exports, will essentially become tariff free to all 11 member countries and vice versa for the UK and respective imports from member countries. 

Further, The domestic reaction to Brexit and its influence upon the United Kingdom’s economy pressured responsible governing bodies to rewrite the UK’s contemporary economic standing. Joining the CPTPP partnership is an attempt at this succession, though national feedback regarding the agreement is wavering.  

The domestic government illustrates positives as newfound access to 500 million consumers contributing to 15% of global GDP. With estimations boosting the UK economy into a surplus of £1.8 Billion, in due course, with forecast wages to increase by £800 million in comparison to 2019 levels (Gov.UK, 2023). 

Though, the agreement is a double-ended sword depicted by UK farmers and NGOs where a list of potential controversies relating to decreased domestic trade, worker exploitation and multinational corporation lawsuits; All of which leading to increased government help and seemingly backtracking on global ESG goals, significant within recent years.  

Beyond all, the agreement is a win at a time of economic stagnancy post-Brexit as described by LankTree of Politico, 2023. The UK will certainly make use of borderline free trade between member countries in addition to enhanced supply chains that will allow for distribution of future tech, minerals and other materials designated to fueling the active battle against climate change. 

The Global Perspective

Due to the UK’s assimilation of regulations to that of the CPTPP outlining there is decreased hope at re-joining the EU; Not that this was part of the grand plan with Brexit, but for some it provides further disappointment to the momentum of the UK economy.

With the newly acquitted UK , the CPTPP comity is more inclined to turn to other applicants such as China and Taiwan, this promotes increased potential and attention towards the worlds largest FTA, Free Trade Agreement. As increased attention sparks and further members are acquitted an increased succession will be seen across all partners.  

Of course discrepancies lie among partner economies just as they do within the UK. With FTA induced high-mobile trade, parameters regarding foreign products and services are a strong suit, specifically due to the vast economic and cultural differences found across the trans-pacific. 

Though these parameters are not to be overlooked, the potential the CPTPP carries on a global scale is renounced and diverse. Significance is found within the opportunity of widespread distribution of CDRs (Carbon Dioxide Reducing) technology, and electric vehicle components that will play a vital role in progression against climate change.  

At the end of the day the CPTPP and UK acceptance is simply another example of globalization and a more inter-connected world, which can be positive and/or negative, as we all know.