Pacific Rim leaders have vowed to fight protectionism after Donald Trump's election victory raised fears the United States would scrap free trade deals. Laura Frykberg reports.
The family photo at the annual APEC meeting is a chance for politicans to show unity. But this year's conference was held in a world that's more divided than ever. High on the agenda - the future U.S. President Donald Trump. A man who's more about protectionism, than embracing globalisation. His election has cast doubt over free trade deals currently in the pipeline. One of them - is the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT, BARACK OBAMA, SAYING: "My meeting with my fellow leaders of the Trans Pacific Partnership was a chance to reaffirm our commitment to the TPP, with its high standards, strong protections for workers, the environment, intellectual property and human rights. Our partners made very clear during the meeting that they want to move forward with TPP. Preferably, they'd like to move forward with the United States." Supporters of the twelve nation deal say it would promote economic growth. According to opponents though - one of its flaws is it reduces workers rights. Something Donald Trump said frequently during his campaign. Doubt over the deal has allowed another super power to seize an opportunity. China has been selling an alternate vision for regional trade. One which analysts say could be even worse for employees. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR FX STRATEGIST, RABOBANK, JANE FOLEY, SAYING: "It's just about tariffs - what it doesn't include - which the TPP would offer - is a little bit more protection perhaps to workers rights etcetera - so they are very different in their makeup - but it seems that this trade deal with China could be given a lot more prominence if the TPP deal falls, which seems very likely." The APEC summit closed with Pacific Rim leaders vowing to fight all forms of protectionism. And left both deals open for further discussion. For them at least - it could be - that if one door closes, another opens.