Trans-Pacific Partnership Trump’s policy
“The Trans-Pacific Partnership is another disaster done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country.”
— Donald Trump, June 28, 2016
The Obama administration made this trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations a major priority, and signed the final proposal in 2016, after seven years of negotiations. But domestic political support for the agreement ― which would have removed thousands of tariffs between the countries, extended U.S. intellectual property protections and reduced China’s trade dominance in East Asia ― quickly flagged before ratification. Both Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders railed against the TPP during the 2016 election, and as soon as Trump took power, he withdrew the United States from it.
July 5 | On the eve of the G-20 summit, the European Union and Japan agree “in principle” to a major free trade deal following four years of negotiations. The move is seen as indirectly criticizing Trump’s isolationist stance on global trade.
April 18 | Traveling in Tokyo, Pence indicates that the United States would be interested in negotiating a bilateral trade agreement with Japan.
January 23 | Trump signs an executive order ending the United States’ participation in the trade partnership. The move was seen as largely symbolic, as the trade deal had become increasingly unpopular with Congress. The United States’ exit makes ratification of the treaty by the other nations virtually impossible.
China Partially or fully unrealized policy
“Interesting how the U.S. sells Taiwan billions of dollars of military equipment but I should not accept a congratulatory call.”
— Donald Trump, December 2, 2016
Trump, as president-elect, left Beijing fuming when he accepted a congratulatory phone call from Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. As president, Trump further antagonized China when his administration, following in the footsteps of its predecessors, approved a $1.4 billion arms deal with Taiwan. The Taiwan issue, along with North Korea and China’s ongoing territorial expansion in the South China Sea, has challenged the warmer relationship Trump hoped would blossom as he held multiple meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
August 22 | The Treasury Department places sanctions on Chinese and Russian individuals and companies it said had conducted business with North Korea in an effort to further isolate the country.
August 14 | Trump signs an executive memorandum ordering an investigation into China’s alleged theft of U.S. intellectual property.
July 5 | As the North Korea nuclear threat escalates, Trump tweets “Trade between China and North Korea grew almost 40% in the first quarter. So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!”
July 3 | China’s military vows to increase air and sea patrols after the warship incident. Beijing calls it a “military provocation.”
July 2 | The USS Stethem, an American warship, sails near a disputed island in the South China Sea. It is the second such operation under Trump, continuing Obama’s policy of challenging China’s territorial claims.
Cuba Partially or fully unrealized policy
“It’s hard to think of a policy that makes less sense than the prior administration’s terrible and misguided deal with the Castro regime.”
— President Trump, June 16, 2017
The Obama administration announced in December 2014 that it would normalize ties with the Castro regime. Diplomatic relations, severed more than a half-century ago, were restored and new regulations expanded travel and trade. Trump, who promised to roll back the changes, initiated a partial reversal in June, although new regulations that would newly restrict American visits to the island and restrict certain kinds of commerce have not yet been promulgated.
August 9 | The U.S. announces that it expelled two Cuban diplomats in May after State Department employees suffered unexplained physical ailments.
June 16 | “I am canceling the last administration’s completely one-sided deal with Cuba,” Trump declares in Little Havana, outlining a new Cuba policy that seeks to limit financial deals with the government and places restrictions on travel to the island. The guidelines do not reverse all of Obama’s policies and would not take effect for month.
Trump’s new Cuba policy plan
January 12 | As one of his last acts in office, President Barack Obama ends the “wet foot, dry foot’” policy for Cubans.
January 11 | During his confirmation hearing, Secretary of State-nominee Rex Tillerson says Trump is planning to review the Cuba policy on Day One.
November 28, 2016 | Trump indicates his unhappiness with increased Cuba ties. He tweets: “If Cuba is unwilling to make a better deal for the Cuban people, the Cuban/American people and the U.S. as a whole, I will terminate deal.”
NAFTA Partially or fully unrealized policy
“NAFTA is the worst trade deal maybe ever signed anywhere, but certainly ever signed in this country.”
— Donald Trump, September 26, 2016
The North American Free Trade Agreement ― which came into effect in 1994 under President Bill Clinton ― greatly reduces trade barriers among Mexico, the United States and Canada. Trump’s stance on NAFTA has seen major swings. He harshly criticized the agreement during his campaign, but early proposals suggested that the administration would seek only minor revisions. Trump then threatened to withdraw the United States entirely, but backed off following meetings with Canadian and Mexican leaders. He now is seeking to renegotiate aspects of the trade deal with them.
May 18 | The administration formally notifies Congress of its intention to renegotiate the agreement, kicking off a 90-day consultation period. The administration says that negotiations will begin as early as Aug. 16.
April 27 | Facing pressure from Congress, members of his team and leaders from Mexico and Canada, Trump announces that he would not pull out of NAFTA “at this time” and instead would seek to renegotiate.
What it'll take to renegotiate NAFTA
April 26 | News breaks that Trump is considering signing an executive action to begin the process of withdrawing from NAFTA.
March 30 | A draft letter released to Congress outlines seemingly modest changes the administration hopes to make to NAFTA.
January 22 | Trump says he will begin renegotiating NAFTA when he meets with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.