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TPP deal dead after Trump elected: PM

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 9/11/2016

Prime Minister John Key has conceded the Trans-Pacific Partnership mega trade deal is dead in the water after the United States elected Donald Trump as its new president.

Mr Trump is fiercely opposed to the 12-nation trade agreement and Mr Key said his election means it is now unlikely to be passed during the so-called "lame duck" period between the presidential election the presidential inauguration on January 20.

"The probability of it passing in the lame duck period is if not zero then it's very close to zero," he told the Paul Henry show.

"It's hard to believe that the Congress is now going to vote for something he is so opposed to."

Mr Key has previously said without the US the deal, covering 40 per cent of global trade and 800 million people, was not worth signing.

But he said the New Zealand economy had been "cranking" along with strong growth rates, a surplus and strong employment growth

"All that has happened without a TPP."

But BusinessNZ says the election result could impact on Kiwi firms who do business with those in the counry's third-largest export market after Mr Trump pledged to hike tariffs on imports especially from China and Mexico.

"This raises the possibility of tariff retaliation and a more general increase in protectionism by other countries. The overall result could be a general decrease in international trade. This would not be in New Zealand's interests," said chief executive Kirk Hope.

TPP opponent Jane Kelsey said Mr Key should put a halt to the passage of the bill amending New Zealand law as part of the trade deal.

"The government should withdraw the legislation and reverse all the other changes it has been making to implement a deal that is unlikely come into force," she said.

Mr Key had congratulated Mr Trump on his election victory and would make personal contact in the coming days.

"The American people have spoken and I congratulate Mr Trump on his victory after a long campaign," Mr Key said in a statement .

Mr Key said New Zealand and the United States shared a strong relationship and he looked forward to that continuing.

"Over the coming months we will be looking to build close ties with the incoming administration."

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