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Pacific Rim trade talks open in San Diego amid criticism about lack of transparency
SAN DIEGO (AP) ¯¯¯ Negotiators from the United States and eight other Pacific Rim nations have opened a round of talks in San Diego on one of the most ambitious trade deals in decades.
The 13th round began Monday amid bipartisan criticism from U.S. lawmakers that they are being left out of the loop in the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Two-thirds of House Democrats last week wrote to the White House's top trade official to insist they be heard.
About 100 protestors peacefully demonstrated outside a downtown hotel where the talks are being held, demanding more transparency.
The United States has been negotiating the pact for about three years. It includes Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. Mexico and Canada are expected to join, and Japan has expressed interest.