Economists Peter A. Petri and Michael G. Plummer question whether the TPP will primarily benefit the rich. Their analysis concludes that “the benefits of the TPP appear to be fairly distributed – labour will increase relative to capital, and cost reduction will favour low-income households. Some workers will have to change jobs, but they represent a small fraction of normal employment in a given year and national benefits argue for generous compensation for their accommodation costs. The agreement will also benefit workers in the poorest member countries of the TPP. [160] Studies by Harvard economist Robert Z. Lawrence have shown that “the percentage gains in labour income generated by the TPP will be slightly greater than the benefits of capital income. Households of all quintiles will benefit from similar percentages, but once differences in spending are taken into account, the percentages of growth for poor and middle-class households will be slightly higher than the benefits to leading households. [161] [162] In a statement by Ed Gerwin in the Wall Street Journal, it is argued that the TPP agreement benefits small businesses in the United States. [88] President Barack Obama defended the Trans-Pacific Trade Pact to oppose China, which writes global trade rules for the 21st century. But days after taking office, President Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement and imposed tariffs on trading partners and sparked a trade war with China. Starting with the Theodore Roosevelt government, the United States has become an important player in international trade, particularly with its neighboring territories in the Caribbean and Latin America.

Today, the United States has become a leader in the free trade movement and supports groups such as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (later the World Trade Organization). [Citation required] According to a September 2016 report by the Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), “if countries take action to combat climate change, conflicts between trade rules and climate targets will intensify.” [102]:1 The report also indicates that trade agreements such as the TPP establish broad-based rules for the economy and government policy, which expands trade, often in the extractive sectors, and protects businesses and financial enterprises from future climate stabilization measures. [102] Some media have called the RCEP a China-led effort, but analysts say that is inaccurate.