The Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Issues for Congress

April 1, 2013

As the TPP negotiations proceed in 2013, several issues will become increasingly important to Congress.

The present negotiations are not being conducted under the auspices of formal trade promotion authority (TPA) — the latest TPA expired on July 1, 2007 — although the Obama Administration informally is following the procedures of the former TPA.  If TPP implementing legislation is brought to Congress, TPA will need to be considered in order to avoid potentially debilitating amendments.

In addition, under long-established executive-legislative practice, the Administration notifies and consults with congressional leaders, before, during, and after trade agreements have been negotiated.  The TPP will likely affect a range of sectors and regions of the U.S. economy of direct interest to Members of Congress and could influence the shape of U.S. trade policy for the foreseeable future.

To examine some of these issues, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) – the independent research arm of the U.S. Congress – released a report in January 2013 titled “The Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Issues for Congress.”

The report discusses a variety of TPP-related topics, including the specific areas under negotiation and the congressional issues that will need to be addressed.

To view the CRS report on TPP, click here.