Student Research

Rise of the Asia-Pacific : U.S. position in a shifting global dynamic

A capstone project submitted to the faculty of the California Maritime Academy in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies and Maritime Affairs.

This essay attempts to identify the ramifications of U.S. exit from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the implications held therein for United States involvement in the Asia-Pacific region and Asia Policy under the Trump administration. Abandonment of the TPP indicates an abdication of U.S. hegemony in the region, allowing China further expansion of influence through the rival trade pact, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). The qualifiers for TPP abandonment under the Trump Administration were insufficient, deserting decades of strategy and national interest in concern of public opinion and faulty analysis. Moving forward, it is necessary the U.S. take care to uphold presence and authority in the region as well as form stronger bilateral trade relations with allies in the region. Special interest should be paid to strong allies that will continue forward with RCEP, namely Australia, Japan and New Zealand who will inevitably develop closer trade relations with China.