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Leaders at APEC summit seek free trade deal 
Leaders gathered at summit seek regional free trade agreement, with China expressing serious reservations.

Leaders from the Pacific Rim gathered for an annual summit in Hawaii have pledged to work together to ensure that world economic growth remains on track, as the US president announced the broad outlines of a plan that he says could work as the model of a trans-Pacific free trade zone.

"There are still plenty of details to work out, but we are confident that we can do so. So we’ve directed our teams to finalise this agreement in the coming year," Obama said on Saturday, while seated beside leaders of eight other nations involved in the negotiations toward setting up what has been dubbed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

"It is an ambitious goal, but we are optimistic that we can get it done," he said.

The proposed trade zone could serve as a model for the region and for other trade pacts, increasing US exports and helping to create jobs at a crucial time for the country’s economy, Obama said.

With Europe struggling to fend off a debt crisis, much of the work done by Obama and other leaders at the summit of the 21-member Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum is aimed at lowering trade barriers and increasing economic cooperation in the region.

"We have an enormous responsibility for supporting the wider world, a responsibility that no one nation could seek to carry alone - it can only be borne if we stand shoulder-to-shoulder," Najib Razak, the Malaysian Prime Minister, said.

APEC members are hoping that by removing these economic barriers, they’ll be able to stir growth in the Asia-Pacific region, thus offsetting the sluggish growth rates and recessions seen in much of the rest of the world.

In addition to the broader TPP, members are also seeking to forge separate free-trade deals.

Leaders at APEC summit seek free trade dealĀ 

Leaders gathered at summit seek regional free trade agreement, with China expressing serious reservations.

Leaders from the Pacific Rim gathered for an annual summit in Hawaii have pledged to work together to ensure that world economic growth remains on track, as the US president announced the broad outlines of a plan that he says could work as the model of a trans-Pacific free trade zone.

"There are still plenty of details to work out, but we are confident that we can do so. So we’ve directed our teams to finalise this agreement in the coming year," Obama said on Saturday, while seated beside leaders of eight other nations involved in the negotiations toward setting up what has been dubbed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

"It is an ambitious goal, but we are optimistic that we can get it done," he said.

The proposed trade zone could serve as a model for the region and for other trade pacts, increasing US exports and helping to create jobs at a crucial time for the country’s economy, Obama said.

With Europe struggling to fend off a debt crisis, much of the work done by Obama and other leaders at the summit of the 21-member Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum is aimed at lowering trade barriers and increasing economic cooperation in the region.

"We have an enormous responsibility for supporting the wider world, a responsibility that no one nation could seek to carry alone - it can only be borne if we stand shoulder-to-shoulder," Najib Razak, the Malaysian Prime Minister, said.

APEC members are hoping that by removing these economic barriers, they’ll be able to stir growth in the Asia-Pacific region, thus offsetting the sluggish growth rates and recessions seen in much of the rest of the world.

In addition to the broader TPP, members are also seeking to forge separate free-trade deals.

Filed under APEC free trade China

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