Q:

How will the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement affect the price of imported electronics?

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Quick Answer

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, similar to other trade agreements, lowers the cost of trade and causes the prices of imported electronics to fall, explains the Economic Policy Institute. These agreements also lead to a reduction in the prices of other imported goods.

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Full Answer

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement involves 12 countries, explains the U.S. Trade Representative. These include Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Peru, Vietnam and Singapore. Other countries that are part of the agreement are New Zealand, Canada and Australia.

Among other benefits, the agreement lowers or eliminates barriers to trade in many sectors, according to the U.S. Trade Representative. It also solves heretofore unaddressed challenges, such as the role of state corporations in the world economy. The agreement also seeks to ensure that all stakeholders benefit from the opportunities it offers.

However, there are several problems with the agreement, argues the Electronic Frontier Foundation. It seems to favor large corporations over public benefit by allowing foreign companies to sue countries with certain laws that promote public interest and by providing minimal protections for personal data.

In addition, the agreement's vague language on protection of trade secrets may engender new legal pitfalls for whistleblowers and journalists, warns the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The agreement also establishes unusually heavy penalties for copyright infringement unmotivated by commercial gain. For instance, illegal file sharing could lead to very large fines, jail time and property seizure even without formal complaints from copyright owners.

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