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Pacific Rim Talks Fail to Back Free Trade Support With Action

  • Fifteen countries met at Chilean seaside resort Vina del Mar
  • U.S. and China sent low level delegations to the talks
Singapore's Koh Poh Koon, left, State Minister for Industry and Commerce walks with Canada's Minister of International Trade and Global Affairs, Francois-Philippe Champagne, right, after the taking of the official photo of the Trans-Pacific meeting in Vina del Mar, Chile, on March 15.

Singapore's Koh Poh Koon, left, State Minister for Industry and Commerce walks with Canada's Minister of International Trade and Global Affairs, Francois-Philippe Champagne, right, after the taking of the official photo of the Trans-Pacific meeting in Vina del Mar, Chile, on March 15.

Photographer: Esteban Felix/AP Photo
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The Pacific Rim trade talks in Chile that were meant to send "an important political signal" in support of free trade ended Wednesday with no final declaration after Singapore was the only Asian nation to send a ministerial-level delegation.

Chile had called the meeting of 15 countries after President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and said he wanted to renegotiate or scrap the North American trade accord, Nafta. Still, anyone hoping the meeting would shed light on replacement trade accords was disappointed.