International Trade

Automakers seek free trade agreement with currency manipulation stipulations to grow sales in Asia

Automakers, including General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co., are hopeful a free trade agreement with currency manipulation stipulations will help grow sales in markets such as Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam.

GM Chief Economist Mustafa Mohatarem said Wednesday that Japan is his biggest worry on getting a deal done.

“If Japan retains the ability to manipulate its currency, the largest market outside the U.S. in TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) will remain closed to the U.S.,” he said at a U.S. Commercial Service business forum in Detroit.

U.S. automakers push currency provisions in trade deals

U.S. automakers expressed frustration on Tuesday that trade negotiators aren’t pushing harder to include currency rules in international trade agreements.

The American Automotive Policy Council (AAPC), which represents the big three auto companies, said they are “alarmed” that the latest round of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks in Hanoi have ended without the subject being discussed.

"After 21 rounds of TPP negotiations, we remain alarmed that a key priority for the U.S. Congress has been ignored,” said AAPC President Matt Blunt.

U.S., Japan ‘Really Making Efforts' To Strike Deal in Auto Talks, Mori Says

he U.S. and Japan are “really making efforts to strike a deal” as soon as possible in bilateral auto negotiations related to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Japanese TPP Ambassador Takeo Mori said Sept. 5.

In remarks to reporters following three days of negotiations with acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Wendy Cutler in Washington, Mori said that the talks are at the “endgame” stage, but he declined to estimate when they would be concluded.

Groups Call For Tough Policy on Foreign Currency Manipulation

Leaders from three manufacturing groups held a news conference, calling on Congress, the White House and trade negotiators to get tough on countries engaged in currency manipulation.

China is their primary target, having tied the value of its dollar to the U.S. dollar instead of allowing it to be determined in foreign exchange markets.

They said U.S. manufacturing may be on a post-recession rebound, but it's being undermined by China's, Vietnam's and a handful of other countries' practice of currency manipulation.