Advising Decision Makers, International Real Estate,

Requiem for the Trans Pacific Partnership (from the late but not forgotten file)

Some may recall when these pages boasted of the inevitability of the ratification of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). We called it such because it cost the US relatively little, but put tremendous pressure on China (who was intentionally not invited to participate).

As we now know, it did not survive the first week of the Trump Administration. In truth however, it was dead long before that. There was no way it was going to make it through the 114th Congress.

So what to say? Were we wrong? Did we misunderstand the political forces? Maybe and No (both qualified). TPP was the right idea at the wrong time. The retrograde waves of populism and isolationism that Trump rode so well were too much for an agreement that required sacrifice and cooperation.

Keep in mind however, that TPP will soldier forward in an anemic, regional form – eliminating the “Trans” in Trans Pacific Partnership if you will. And in the bitterest of ironies, this truncated TPP is likely to be dominated by…wait for it…China. Raise your hand if you saw that coming. Riiiight…put your hand down, you’re embarrassing yourself.


Experienced real estate consultant, scholar and visionary, Emery Matthews founded and serves as the principal of Detroit-based Real Estate Interests, LLC. Matthews has been a major player in the Detroit real estate landscape for more than a decade, regularly managing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of projects and investments. Real Estate Interests, LLC provides specialized consulting services designed to help guide companies through major changes and complex deals, managing assets and property, and advising decision makers. Matthews and his team are currently managing projects in Detroit and across the U.S. in the automotive, manufacturing and education spaces, while increasing their foothold in the rapidly growing Sub-Saharan African nations of South Africa, Ghana and Nigeria. A Detroit native, Matthews earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and simultaneously earned a Juris Doctorate and Master’s of Business Administration degree from Harvard University. As a lifelong learner with a global vision, Matthews is fluent in German and currently working to improve his Chinese.