Negotiations are in the works to finalize the rambling Asian pact supported by China as the world’s biggest trade deal is likely to push through.
The RCEP is a proposed regional free trade agreement between the 10 member states of ASEAN and its six partners — China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and India initiated in 2012 by ASEAN.
It was revealed that 30% of the global GDP makes up the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang informed that15 member states of the RCEP have concluded all text negotiations and essentially all market access negotiations.
But apart from all participating countries, India remains to have outstanding and unresolved issues to which all RCEP participating countries will work together to resolve these in a mutually way.
Li considers this undertaking as a major breakthrough in the construction of an East Asia free trade area. This project will further boost the large population with most diversified membership and greatest potential for development.
Moreover, this project will promote the regional economic integration safeguard free trade and boost market confidence.
Li further assures that they are willing to accelerate negotiations on the China-Japan-Republic of Korea free trade area and move towards the goal of building an East Asian economic community.
Leaders pledged to sign an agreement in 2020 to promote regional trade and investment liberalization and facilitation.
RCEP will become the world’s largest free trade agreement, covering almost half of the world’s population. It accounts for almost 30% of global trade and about 33% of global investment inflows.
Li admits that the world is facing economic slowdown and growing protectionism, causing new risks and challenges to the development of East Asian countries. In addition, the international landscape undergoes profound and complicated changes.
He added that member countries have the duty to strengthen solidarity and coordination to overcome risks and challenges, They are also expected to incorporate new driving force into the stable growth of regional and global economy.
He has further encouraged members to support regional connectivity, enhance regional financial cooperation. He also emphasized the promotion of sustainable development strengthening people-to-people and cultural exchanges.