Table of Contents

ASPI Report

September 30th, 2020


Wendy Cutler

In the aftermath of a presidential election, it’s not unusual for an incoming administration to revisit policy choices made by the previous administration or, in the case of reelection, during the first term. One decision that strongly merits another look after November is the U.S. withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a regional trade agreement that the United States signed with 11 other countries in 2016.

In recent years, the case for U.S. participation in the TPP has only become more compelling as the political and economic importance of the Asia-Pacific region has grown and concerns about Beijing’s economic model have mounted. But is there a path for the United States to return to the TPP or to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which the 11 remaining countries finalized without the United States?

This report, titled Reengaging the Asia-Pacific on Trade: A TPP Roadmap for the Next U.S. Administration, examines the options that the next administration would have for reengaging the CPTPP countries on trade based on domestic considerations and developments, as well as input from the CPTPP countries. The report concludes with a road map that offers concrete recommendations for how the next administration, Democrat or Republican, can reengage with the CPTPP countries.

About the Author

Wendy Cutler is Vice President of the Asia Society Policy Institute. She served for nearly three decades as a diplomat and negotiator in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, most recently as Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative.