OTTAWA — Canada and the remaining members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership have agreed to a revised trade agreement, according to several international media reports early Tuesday.
The reported deal follows two days of talks in Tokyo and the 11 remaining members will now apparently work toward signing the deal by early March.
Word of the agreement came just hours after a federal government official said Ottawa was optimistic that a revised TPP deal would be reached as early as Tuesday.
The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told The Canadian Press that Ottawa believed a deal could be struck even though it would still like to see more progress on negotiations surrounding the automotive and cultural sectors.
The Tokyo discussions are the first high-level talks since the leaders of the TPP countries met in November on the sidelines of the APEC summit in Danang, Vietnam. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made international headlines there by deciding not to sign an agreement-in-principle on what has become known as TPP11.
His decision to continue negotiating for a better deal, rather than striking an agreement, led to the abrupt cancellation of a TPP leaders' meeting on the sidelines of the summit in Vietnam.
The original TPP was thrown into disarray when U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from the deal in one of his first acts as president.
The TPP talks come as Canada faces a tough renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement. NAFTA negotiators from Canada, the United States and Mexico are meeting in Montreal this week.