Tuesday evening’s Yomiuri wrote that according to the Australian Associated Press, Australian Prime Minister Turnbull told reporters on Tuesday there is a possibility that the United States will change its policy on the TPP in the future. He also indicated the possibility of moving forward with the TPP agreement without Washington’s participation. When asked by a reporter whether China’s participation in the TPP would be desirable, Turnbull reportedly said that China might participate in the regional trade pact. Tokyo Shimbun ran a Kyodo report saying that the Australian leader said he has spoken with Prime Minister Abe and the leaders of several TPP signatories about the possibility of moving forward with the TPP without the U.S.
In a related development, several papers this morning wrote that that Chilean Foreign Minister Munoz told reporters on Monday that his country is inviting ministers of other TPP signatories and China and South Korea to a meeting in March in Santiago to seek ways to establish a new framework without U.S. participation. The papers speculated that Chile made the move in response to President Trump’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the TPP.