US lawmakers seek congressional consultation on IPEF

NewsDrum Desk
08 Sep 2022

Washington, Sep 8 (PTI) On the eve of the US hosting the first in-person Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) Ministerial in Los Angeles, a group of more than 40 influential lawmakers on Thursday urged the Biden administration for a robust engagement with the Congress on this critical trade issue.

A letter written by Chair of the House Appropriations Committee Rosa DeLauro, Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders, along with 42 House Democrats urged the Biden administration to learn from the failures of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

The first in-person IPEF Ministerial in Los Angeles, beginning Thursday, is being attended by Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal among others.

"We urge you to consider the lessons of past trade negotiations that too often were conducted in secret, with members of Congress, workers and their unions, environmentalists, and consumer advocates largely unable to review text and ensure their interests were addressed,” the lawmakers wrote.

"…If negotiations on IPEF and APEP proceed, we urge you to ensure that any agreement benefits American workers, not corporate offshoring, and to provide Congress and the public with clearer insight into your approach to the negotiation process, including through robust consultation throughout the process and congressional approval of any binding commitments,” it said.

The letter has been addressed to US Trade Representative Katherine Tai, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.

The lawmakers said the proposed partners for IPEF include nations such as Vietnam and Malaysia with autocratic governments, terrible human and labour rights practices, and poor environmental protections.

While the Office of US Trade Representative has committed to including strong labour standards, including country-specific provisions where needed, other agencies have yet to make a similar commitment. PTI LKJ ZH ZH

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