President Barack Obama on Thursday postponed a decision on whether to sign a free trade agreement with the Pacific nation of Vietnam, despite repeated requests from his trade advisers.
The White House has said it would review the trade agreement, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but has said that it would take into account the effects on the U.S. economy.
In a statement Thursday, White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said the administration is reviewing the Vietnam trade agreement and that the administration would make a decision “as soon as possible.”
“We’re making a determination about how best to implement this agreement, and that determination will take into consideration the benefits that this agreement would bring to American workers, American businesses, and American consumers,” Navarro added.
Navarro added that the decision on signing a trade deal with Vietnam would depend on the “economic impact of the agreement on the United States and on the jobs it creates for American workers.”
On Wednesday, Obama asked Trade Representative Michael Froman to send him a draft of a letter outlining the agreement, which he has not yet seen.
A draft of the letter has been released, but from an early draft, which was circulated among the Obama administration’s trade advisers last month.
Vietnam is a major trading partner for the United State, and the two countries have signed several trade agreements in recent years.
The U.N. General Assembly voted to endorse the deal in December 2015.