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Risks and Implications of US-Taiwan Trade Deal

The US-Taiwan trade agreement has emerged as the newest flashpoint in a bitter struggle over who has the right to make trade policy in the country over the past few years. The statement by the executive branch that trade agreements do not require congressional approval has alarmed politicians about the diminishing influence of Congress in determining trade policy.

A Watershed Moment

The executive branch's pursuit of Trade Executive Agreements (TEAs), which are negotiated with little involvement from Congress, is at the centre of the controversy. More than 1,200 of these agreements have been made with 130 nations, which has led to worries that they limit Congress' ability to enforce the Constitution's prohibition on interstate trade. One example of this pattern is the US-Taiwan trade agreement, which has raised bipartisan concerns about the growing role of the executive branch in determining trade policy.

The US-Taiwan trade agreement has drawn criticism for both its potential effects on the delicate balance of power between the executive and legislative branches as well as its potential economic ramifications. While the agreement addresses important topics including regulatory practises, anticorruption measures, and cooperation on trade facilitation, the absence of additional market-access agreements casts doubt on the agreement's overall success in advancing American economic interests.

The report highlights that Congress, recognizing the need to assert its authority, passed a bill approving the first phase of the US-Taiwan deal while emphasizing enhanced transparency in ongoing negotiations. This legislation aims to ensure that trade agreements negotiated by the executive branch align with the interests of all Americans and that Congress remains an active participant in trade policy decisions.

Uncertain Road Ahead

Beyond the pact itself, the effects of the US-Taiwan trade agreement are far-reaching. According to the report, the law establishes a standard for the re-evaluation of American trade policy power. It might provide as a springboard for legislation of a similar nature with regard to other talks going on, like the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, the UK, and Kenya. This change would help provide clear standards for environmental and labour issues in trade agreements, strengthening Congress' influence over trade policy.

The research makes the case that the US-Taiwan trade agreement is a move in the right direction towards restoring the balance of power, but problems still exist. President Biden's attitude might lead to conflict between the executive and legislative branches since it treats reporting and transparency obligations as "non-binding" if they conflict with his constitutional authority. Because of this, it is unclear how inclined the administration will be to work with Congress on trade policy issues.

The report exhorts President Biden to embrace Congress' rekindled interest in trade policy and to work cooperatively to determine the future of US trade relations in order to preserve a functional balance of authority between the two bodies of government. In addition to reducing tensions, such cooperation would ensure that a set of agreements that benefits all Americans is more clear, predictable, and binding.


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