Wisconsin Public Radio

Manufacturing is still critical to the economy United States. Clyde Prestowitz, says it's time to start realizing the positive spillovers that manufacturing creates... Read more  

Events & Activities

Stephen Olson at Chinese Development Institute Conference


 Clyde Prestowitz giving presentation to CDI...


Steve Olson teaching trade negotiations at the Mekong Institute...


Stephen Olson to speak at upcoming workshop organized by the International Institute for Trade and Development on 

"Economics of GMS Agricultural trade in goods and services towards the world market"

Chiangmai, Thailand Sep 8-12.


Transcript of Press Call Between DeLauro, Ellison, Slaughter, and Prestowitz


Members of Congress and Experts - April 16, 2014 Press Call on President Obama’s Trip to Asia


Thank you very much, Congressman. Now I’d like to introduce Clyde Prestowitz. Clyde Prestowitz is very well known as one of our country’s lea ding experts on the intersection between geopolitics and economics. He had a long and some might say difficult experience as a U.S. trade negotiator in Japan and Korea and China during the Reagan Administration. And as President of the Economic Strategy Institute, hebrought that negotiator’s experience now to many books and professorships. Clyde, take it away.

Clyde Prestowitz:

Thank you for kindly inviting me. It’s a pleasure to be with the congresspersons. When the TPP was first raised as a possibility, I was among those consulted by the White House on what the objectives of the TPP should be. I asked the officials in charge at the time what the real objective of the U.S. was.

It’s important to understand that the history of the TPP actually began in Singapore. Singapore had been proposing a variety of free trade agreements in the South Pacific and Southwestern Pacific, and for a long time the U.S. ignored these, but then a couple of years ago the White House picked it up as a major objective. And so my question was “why?”

The answer was not that we’re going to create jobs for the United States, not that we’re going to stimulate the U.S. economy, but that we’re going to reassure our friends and allies in Asia that, quote, “we’re back." This was to be in response to a complaint that had arisen in Southeast Asia that we, America, had somehow gone away and had not been attending all the top conferences in Asia and so forth.

So the objective is really a geopolitical objective, not an economic objective. But because the mechanism to express this “we’re back” feeling is a trade agreement, it has to be presented and sold as something that’s going to create jobs in the U.S. and that’s going to benefit the U.S. economy.

So in my mind there are two questions. One is, will a TPP as we understand it at the moment actually be a plus for the US economy? And two, will it in any way affect our security position in the Pacific, in the world, and in some way strengthen that position? I think the answer to both questions is no.


To read transcript of press call in its entirety, please click here.

To listen to audio from the press call, please click here.

Join our mailing list

Latest Publications

The Betrayal of American Prosperity.

The Trans-Paific Partnership and Japan.

Making the Mexian Miracle.

Industrial Policy and Rebalancing in the US and China.

The Evolving Role of China in International Institutions.


Contact us

Economic Strategy Institute

1730 Rhode Island Avenue, NW, Suite 414 |  Washington DC  |  20036
Ph (202) 213-7051  |  Fax (202) 965-1104  |  info@econstrat.org