Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Obama to discuss TPPA and South China Sea in KL

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and the South China Sea maritime and territorial disputes will be among key issues on the table during US President Barack Obama’s visit to Malaysia.

US Ambassador to Malaysia Joseph Yun said Obama would also be interested in issues involving the economy, environment, regional security and counter-terrorism besides the “code of conduct” in the South China Sea.

Obama will travel to Turkey, the Philippines and Malaysia from Nov 14 to 22.

In the Philippines, he will attend the Asia Pacific Economic Coopera­tion Summit. In Kuala Lumpur, he will attend the US-Asean and East Asia summits.

“I am sure he will talk about TPPA as so many countries that are part of it, such as Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Brunei, will be attend the summit,” he told reporters at the signing of an agreement on quick response for disaster relief aid in the region at the UN Humanitarian Response Depot in Subang yesterday.

Yun said it would be up to each country to go through its own domestic ratification process on the TPPA.

“We hope that it can be comple­ted by all our 12 partners soon,” he said.

On the South China Sea dispute, Yun said the United States wanted all stakeholders to co-operate despite the overlapping claims.

“The first thing we must accept is international law. We welcome Malaysia and Asean’s efforts in working closely with China to come up with a code of conduct (CoC),” he said.

“If you have a CoC, then you have an agreement on how to behave despite the overlapping claims.

“So I think Malaysia is right in making that a priority issue,” Yun added.

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