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Obama: Pacific Trade Deal ‘Most Progressive’ Deal Ever

President Obama calls the Trans-Pacific trade deal reached by his negotiators the, “most progressive, high-standard trade deal ever crafted.”

But he acknowledged that certain economic trends would continue in spite of the deal, including lower wages for American workers and currency manipulation. He also admitted that currency manipulation rules wouldn’t be enforceable under the deal, even though labor standards and environmental standards would be enforceable.

“This is the first time we’ve been able to get all these countries to agree on it — there are a set of principles in terms of how you measure and what constitutes currency manipulation,” he said. “Now it is not an enforceable provision in the same way that for example, violations of labor standards or environmental standards will be.”

The president made his remarks about the trade deal during an interview with Marketplace.org. Obama signaled a cynical view of manufacturing in United States, arguing that many companies had already fled the country and will not be coming back.

“We’re not going to bring back all the manufacturing jobs that were lost,” he said, acknowledging that labor unions opposed the deal. “The economy is dynamic and is changing.”

Although he appeared optimistic that more manufacturing jobs would be created in the United States as a result of the deal, he argued against policies that isolated the country from trade, admitting that job losses would continue as a result of globalization.

“What we can’t do is think that somehow, if we draw a moat around this country, that we’re going to be able to avoid globalization and technology, because frankly when you look at job loss and lost leverage, automation and technology has probably contributed more than trade has to that problem,” he said.

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