A month after the end of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, the full text of the agreement has finally been released – including specific details on rules of origin and short supply lists for textiles and apparel.

There is also a special feature for Vietnam, linking improved access to the US market for cotton pants to the purchase of US-made cotton fabric.

The pact would eliminate tariffs on textile and apparel goods traded between the 12 TPP countries – the US, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Singapore – with many tariffs going to zero on day one, and others being phased out.

There are also specific rules of origin that require use of yarns and fabrics from the US or other TPP countries in order to get the lower tariffs.

The agreement also provides for accumulation so that, in general, inputs from one TPP party are treated the same as materials from any other if used to produce a product in any TPP party. A common TPP-wide system of showing and verifying that goods made in the TPP meet the rules of origin has been created, and importers will be able to claim preferential tariff treatment as long as they have the documentation to support their claim. The agreement also provides the competent authorities with the procedures to verify claims appropriately.

At the same time, there are exceptions to the general rules of origin. The Textiles and Apparel chapter includes a “short supply list,” which includes nearly 200 items and provides TPP partners with flexibilities in cases where the US and other TPP members do not produce enough of a particular fabric or yarn to meet production needs. In such cases, the short supply list allows apparel using these specified materials from outside the TPP region to qualify for TPP’s reduced tariff rates.

In addition, there are commitments on customs cooperation and enforcement to prevent duty evasion, smuggling and fraud, as well as a textile-specific special safeguard to respond to serious damage or the threat of serious damage to domestic industry in the event of a sudden surge in imports.

Optimism about the likely positive impact of the new Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal – mixed in with concerns about if and when it might be implemented – was discussed this week at the United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) annual Textile & Apparel Importer Trade and Transportation Conference: US ports humming but TPP timing causes concern

However, on the same day that the TPP text was released, the Obama Administration began the process of sending notifications to Congress and the US International Commission (USITC) to indicate that it is also preparing to sign the agreement.

Under the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) which was approved in June, the President must wait at least 90 days following these notifications – or until the first week of February 2016 – before signing.

While this action leaves open the door for Congressional consideration during 2016, political calculations may delay consideration until late 2016 or beyond.

Click on the following links to read the full text of the TPP: