TPP member countries comprise about 40 percent of global GDP and represent about one third of world trade. It took the 12 countries more than five years to negotiate the comprehensive trade agreement.
The individual countries must now ratify the agreement for it to take effect. For the United States, this means President Obama and other supporters of the TPP must begin the arduous task of convincing Congress to vote in favor of the agreement.
TPP promises a number of trade benefits for U.S. exporters, including reduction or outright elimination of tariffs and non-tariff barriers, increase in market access for agricultural products, new binding commitments in e-commerce, stricter controls for state-owned enterprises, strong trade enforcement, good governance standards, streamlined treatment of cross-border shipments, promotion of regulatory transparency, and supports for small to midsized businesses.
A group of large U.S. companies and trade associations are lobbying Capitol Hill lawmakers to pass TPP.