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Froman Heads To Vietnam After Talks In Japan Narrow Gaps On Ag, Autos

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman on Tuesday (April 21) headed to Vietnam for talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with his counterparts, after completing two days of negotiations with Japan's TPP minister in Tokyo that both sides said narrowed the gaps on outstanding agriculture and auto issues but did not yield a bilateral deal.

EU Makes Push On Energy In Round Otherwise Focused On Regulatory Issues
TTIP Round Nine Preview

NEW YORK -- The European Commission hopes to make a forceful case here this week for why a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) deal should include a standalone chapter dedicated to liberalizing trade in energy and raw materials, in a ninth round of talks otherwise focused on how to foster greater regulatory alignment between the U.S. and EU.

Two House Dems Seek Support For TTIP Demands As Ninth Round Convenes

Two House Democrats critical of trade agreements are seeking support from fellow members for four key demands related to the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, including the exclusion of an investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism, according to a dear colleague letter that sets an April 20 deadline for signatures to a letter to President Obama.

China Publishes Notice Suspending Cyber Regs In Banking Sector

The Chinese government last week announced it will suspend the implementation of new regulations that would require foreign companies supplying information and communications technology (ICT) to China's financial institutions to turn over sensitive commercial information about their equipment, and that it would revise those rules after getting feedback from interested parties.

Holleyman Says U.S. Engaged To Overcome Differences On BIT With India

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Robert Holleyman last week signaled the United States has engaged with India on its draft model bilateral investment treaty (BIT) released last month in an effort to close the gaps on investment protections enough to allow a strong bilateral agreement.

Finance To Continue Fast-Track Hearing Under Pressure From Democrats

Under pressure from Senate Finance Committee Democrats, Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has reversed his position and agreed to hold another hearing on a bill to renew fast-track negotiating authority on Tuesday (April 21).

World Trade Organization

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  • House Ways & Means Committee Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-MI) late last week dismissed as insufficient overtures from the Obama administration that it could support legislation to create more specific criteria for determining whether a U.S. trading partner should be named a currency manipulator in the Treasury Department's twice-yearly report.

  • The Chinese government last week announced it will suspend the implementation of new regulations that would require foreign companies supplying information and communications technology (ICT) to China's financial institutions to turn over sensitive commercial information about their equipment, and that it would revise those rules after getting feedback from interested parties.

FTA Central

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  • Two House Democrats critical of trade agreements are seeking support from fellow members for four key demands related to the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, including the exclusion of an investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism, according to a dear colleague letter that sets an April 20 deadline for signatures to a letter to President Obama.

  • U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman will travel to Tokyo on Saturday (April 18) to hold bilateral talks with his ministerial counterpart on agriculture and auto issues under the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), with U.S. officials hoping the April 16 introduction of Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill in Congress will spur progress in the negotiations.