TPP pact will not be signed in Oct: MITI sec-gen

KUALA LUMPUR (July 15, 2013): The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, which involves 12 countries, will not be signed in October as what was initially expected as there are many areas which have not been agreed on.

Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) secretary-general, Datuk Dr Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria, said the TPP negotiations were talks among equals and even if one party did not agree, there was no conclusion to the agreement.

"The most important thing is that we will not compromise Malaysia's sovereignty and that we will stick to our policy.

"We use negotiating skills to exclude areas that impact on sovereignty," she said at the Young Entrepreneur Organisation of Malaysia forum and dialogue on the TPP here today.

In October 2010, Malaysia joined as a party to the TPP negotiations.

Sta Maria said Malaysia chose to participate in the TPP negotiations at an early date so as to understand what was going on in the process of the negotiations and to be able to influence the outcome.

On the small and medium enterprises (SMEs), she said the issues related to their development were included in the TPP talks. – Bernama