Donald Trump has announced the United States will quit the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal on his first day in the White House.
The president-elect made the announcement in a video message outlining what he intends to do first when he takes office in January.
The TPP trade deal was signed by 12 countries which together cover 40% of the world’s economy.
Donald Trump also pledged to reduce “job-killing restrictions” on coal production and stop visa abuses.
However, there was no mention of repealing ObamaCare or building a wall on the southern border with Mexico, two actions Donald Trump said during the campaign he would do as soon as he assumed power.
During the presidential election campaign, Donald Trump gave broadbrush arguments against the TPP deal, and used plenty of colorful language.
In June 2016, Donald Trump described it as “another disaster done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country, just a continuing rape of our country”. In another speech he referred to the TPP as “the greatest danger yet”.
While there was plenty of talk about “taking back control” of the US economy, there were few specifics.
Announcing the plan to pull out of the TPP, Donald Trump said that the US would “negotiate fair, bilateral trade deals that bring jobs and industry back onto American shores”.
In the video message, Donald Trump said his governing agenda would be based on “putting America first” and that he and the new administration would “bring back our jobs”.
Besides quitting the TPP, Donald Trump committed to several other executive actions that he said he would take on day one.
The president-elect said he would cancel restrictions on US energy production.
In 2015, President Barack Obama brought in the Clean Power Plan, an anti-climate change measure which aimed to reduce carbon emissions from the power sector by 32% by 2030 compared with 2005 levels.
The Clean Power Plan, already on hold due to legal challenges, would have restricted coal power plants and came up against strong opposition in areas where leaders said the plans would devastate local economies.
Donald Trump said: “I will cancel job-killing restrictions on the production of American energy, including shale energy and clean coal, creating many millions of high-paying jobs.
“That’s what we want – that’s what we’ve been waiting for.”
The president-elect, a real estate mogul himself, has been strongly opposed to business regulations throughout his campaign. He blamed them for stifling business. A month before the election, he said that if he won, 70% of regulations could be axed, but safety and environmental rules would stay.
Now Donald Trump has pledged that for every new regulation brought into force, two old regulations will be eliminated.
Political leaders in Asia in particular have reacted strongly.
Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe said the TPP would be “meaningless” without the involvement of the US.
New Zealand’s PM John Key said the US was “not an island”.
Economist Harumi Taguchi said China could move in to fill the “void” left by the deal’s collapse.
However, Malaysia’s PM Najib Razak said it was President-elect Donald Trump’s right “to make the policy decisions he thinks right”.