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US Senate hands Obama fast-track authority

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Politics
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Now that the bill has been approved, the United States and 11 other nations involved in the TPP talks are expected to speed up preparations for a final agreement. This would include arrangements for a ministerial-level meeting

The US Senate has approved a bill that would give President Barack Obama the authority to fast-track negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade pact.

The Senate on Wednesday passed the Trade Promotion Authority bill by a majority vote. Many Republicans and some Democrats voted in favor.

The legislation will go into effect when signed by Obama. The House of Representatives approved it last week.

Obama and Republicans have worked together to pass the bill since it was submitted in April.

But deliberations have faced difficulties. Many Democrats argue that a free trade pact would threaten US jobs.

Now that the bill has been approved, the United States and 11 other nations involved in the TPP talks are expected to speed up preparations for a final agreement. This would include arrangements for a ministerial-level meeting.