MEXICO CITY, Aug 5 – A meeting of ministers from a trans-Pacific trade bloc will discuss measures aimed at reviving economic growth after the coronavirus pandemic, the Mexican government, which is chairing the virtual conference, said on Wednesday.
Top officials from the 11-member Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) are due to hold a video conference on Wednesday evening Mexican time, coinciding with Thursday morning in East Asia.
The economy ministry of Mexico, which as president pro tempore of the group will chair proceedings, said ministers will discuss strategies to achieve “a rapid economic recovery” as well as compare notes on how to deal with the pandemic.
Earlier, Japanese Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said the meeting would be a good time to stress that encouraging free trade will be an important part of the recovery.
The CTTPP, which came together after U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal in 2017, comprises Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
In June, the United Kingdom said it was seeking to join the bloc.
Mexican Economy Minister Graciela Marquez said in an interview with Mexican media on Wednesday that the possibility of accepting new members would be analyzed during the meeting.
Ahead of the meeting, 15 committees held sessions to look at different aspects of the accord, including goods trade, state-owned enterprises, regulatory coherence, rules of origin, financial services and the environment, Mexico said. (Reporting by Dave Graham and Sharay Angulo; Writing by Dave Graham; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Jonathan Oatis)