July 19, 2018 / 9:00 AM / 9 months ago

Singapore third country to ratify Asia-Pacific trade pact

SINGAPORE, July 19 (Reuters) - Singapore on Thursday ratified the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the third country to adopt the Asia-Pacific trade pact renegotiated by 11 countries after it was rejected by U.S. President Donald Trump.

The landmark deal was signed in March by the 11 countries including Japan, Canada and Mexico after Trump pulled out of the original 12-member agreement known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) three days after taking office last year.

Even without the United States, the deal will reduce tariffs in countries with a combined GDP of $10 trillion and a market of nearly 500 million people, making it one of the world’s largest trade agreements.

The agreement will become effective when at least six of the signatories ratify it, possibly before the end of the year.

“Against the current backdrop of trade tensions and antiglobalisation sentiments, the CPTPP sends a strong signal of our commitment to trade liberalisation and a rules-based trading system,” Singapore trade minister Chan Chun Sing said.

Mexico and Japan have ratified the agreement. (Reporting by Jack Kim; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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