Trade in Trouble: How the Asia-Pacific Can Step Up and Lead Reforms


Report Launch Event (By Invitation Only)

The U.S.-China trade dispute has dominated headlines over the past year, and while a deal to end the tensions appears imminent, it will not be the end of the story. The challenges that gave rise to the tensions in the first place, namely the failure of the international trade system to keep up with developments in the global economy and advancements in technology, will remain. Simply put, the trade regime is in trouble and in urgent need of reform.

At this dynamic time in trade, the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) convened its 3rd Annual Trade Commission of experts from across the Asia-Pacific to examine the latest developments in trade and offer practical recommendations for policymakers in its new report, Trade in Trouble: How the Asia-Pacific Can Step Up and Lead Reforms.

Join ASPI Vice President and report co-author Wendy Cutler for a special launch event at the Embassy of Australia. The event will feature a panel of Asian ambassadors to share the views from the region on the pressing challenges facing the trading landscape and discuss the findings of the report’s recommendations on how the Asia-Pacific can lead in facing them.

The event is by invitation-only. For additional information, please contact or 202-833-2742. Attendees are encouraged to arrive 15 min early to allow time to pass through embassy security.

Opening Remarks

Joe Hockey

The Honorable Joe Hockey is Australia’s Ambassador to the United States of America, taking up his posting in Washington in January 2016. Prior to his current posting, Hockey has had a long and distinguished career in public service, including serving as a Member of the Australian Parliament and as a Minister in a number of different portfolios, including Financial Services, Small Business and Tourism, Human Services, and Employment and Workplace Relations. Hockey has also served as the Treasurer of the Commonwealth, in which capacity he was responsible for economic policy and worked with international organizations such as the G20, IMF, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and APEC.


Wendy Cutler is vice president at the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) and the managing director of the Washington D.C. office. She joined ASPI following an illustrious career of nearly three decades as a diplomat and negotiator in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), including serving as Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative. In that capacity, she worked on a range of U.S. trade negotiations and initiatives in the Asia-Pacific region, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and the bilateral negotiations with Japan. She also was the Chief Negotiator to the U.S.-Korea (Korus) Free Trade Agreement.

Ambassador Ashok Mirpuri

Ambassador Ashok Mirpuri has served as the Ambassador to the United States of the Republic of Singapore since July 2012. Prior to his current appointment, he served as Ambassador to Indonesia from 2006 to 2012, High Commissioner to Malaysia from 2002 to 2006 and High Commissioner to Australia from 2000 to 2002.  A career diplomat, Ambassador Mirpuri joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in 1984, holding various positions both at home and abroad.

Amb Banks

Ambassador Rosemary Banks has served as the Ambassador of New Zealand to the U.S. since January 2019. Prior to that, she led a career spanning forty years in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), including overseas assignments as the Permanent Representative to the U.N in New York, as Ambassador to France and Portugal, and as the Permanent Representative to the OECD. Ambassador Banks also served as Deputy Secretary at MFAT, responsible for multilateral, consular, and legal affairs.


Jenny Leonard

Jenny Leonard is a trade reporter with Bloomberg covering trade policy in Washington, D.C. Prior to that, she was an Associate Editor at Inside U.S. Trade covering trade policy under the Trump Administration and on Capitol Hill, including stories on the negotiations for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS). She is a career journalist, with print and video reporting in outlets including Vice News, USA Today, the Texas Tribune, the Marine Corps Times and McClatchy.

Event Details

Thu 30 May 2019
4:30 - 7 p.m.

Embassy of Australia, Washington D.C.

This event is invitation-only. For more information, contact or 202-833-2742
Add to Calendar 20190530T203000 20190530T230000 UTC Asia Society: Trade in Trouble: How the Asia-Pacific Can Step Up and Lead Reforms Embassy of Australia, Washington D.C.