POLITICS

Govt Says Trans-Pacific Partnership '90 Percent' Complete Despite Canada Snub

Trade Minister says the deal's not dead.

12/11/2017 10:24 AM AEDT | Updated 12/11/2017 10:40 AM AEDT
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Malcolm Turnbull and Trade Minister Steven Ciobo at APEC.

Trade Minister Steve Ciobo remains upbeat about the future of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, despite the deal being dealt a major setback this week.

Earlier this year, the US announced it was pulling out of the 12-nation deal that this week suffered another blow at the APEC summit in Vietnam after Canada announced a raft of 11-hour demands.

The Canadian about-face on the major free trade deal was a big blow for the Turnbull government -- one of the major backers of the agreement.

Despite the latest setback, Ciobo said he believed the TPP was still close to getting over the line.

"We've come a long way. I would describe it as 90 percent completed," he told ABC television on Sunday.

"We got the strong core elements of a deal. At one stage, we reached an agreement between the trade ministers that would see the TPP come into effect.

"It was then recommended by trade ministers to leaders. Long story short, there's several matters still unresolved that Canada has raised."

Ciobo said he was confident he could get the TPP back on track even though Canadian interest had cooled.

"Having lost a bit of a momentum on the back of the decision by the Canadians not to attend the leaders meeting on it ... we'll have to keep working methodically through it."

The government says the pact -- stitched together over more than a year -- would deliver 19 new free trade deals among the 11 signatory nations.

For Australia, supporters say it would mean greater market access for local businesses in places like Japan, Singapore, Chile, Singapore and Malaysia.

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