Donald Trump proposes rejoining Trans-Pacific Partnership

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President Donald Trump has directed senior aides to explore re-joining the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership if a "better deal" can be reached, the White House said Thursday.

Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse says Trump said during a White House meeting with Midwest governors and lawmakers that he had "deputized" US trade representative Robert Lighthizer and economic adviser Larry Kudlow to look into the USA rejoining the TPP.

Trump on Thursday met with lawmakers and some governors at the White House to "discuss issues impacting the agricultural community including trade", a White House.

Senator Deb Fischer, a Republican from the corn-growing state of Nebraska, said in a statement Thursday she was "encouraged" by Trump's move "to reengage with TPP nations".

Trump has ostensibly begun to appreciate that case.

"It is good news that today the president directed Larry Kudlow and Ambassador Lighthizer to negotiate U.S. entry into TPP", Senator Ben Sasse, a pro-trade Republican, said in a statement after the meeting between Trump and the senators.

During his election campaign in 2016, Trump was frequently skeptical of the value of multilateral trade pacts, arguing instead that bilateral deals could offer better terms.

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Just by floating the idea, the GOP president drew the ire of conservatives on social media as he opened the door to joining a trade pact with 11 other Asian countries that he once dubbed "a continuing rape of our country".

The decision, which was welcomed by lawmakers from agricultural states, could mark an abrupt about-face for a president who had campaigned against the deal and swiftly withdrew from it after taking office a year ago. Earlier this month, in a bid to punish Beijing for stealing American intellectual property, Trump announced plans to impose tariffs on a long list of Chinese imports. Roberts says it would be "good news all throughout farm country".

But Trump is struggling to get support from other countries for his recent threat to impose import tariffs on China and the U.S. farm lobby is arguing that retaliation by China would hit American agricultural exports. Almost two-thirds of USA soybean exports go to China. Trump withdrew the United States from the TPP days after becoming president in January 2017. He has previously said he might reconsider the deal.

"The farmers and ranchers, they don't want welfare payments - they want to feed the world", Sasse said.

Trump has been highly critical of the 2016 trade deal, especially when he was a presidential candidate. Now, with USA influence erased from its design, Trump dreams of resetting the terms in our favor.

"Until the President seeks to enter into agreements that benefit the American worker, I will do everything I can to ensure that the United States does not rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership".

What has Trump said about it?

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