Asian nations agree to seal RCEP in November

Asian nations agree to seal RCEP in November

Trade officials from 16 Asian nations were confirmed to have agreed to conclude the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) in November.

Since the RECP is seen as being able to rival with the US, Japan-led Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (TPP), all eyes are on whether China would lead the trade market through the new pact following its financial influence expansion through the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

According to data submitted by South Korea's Ministry of Trade Industry and Energy to the office of a New Politics Alliance for Democracy policymaker Bu Jwa-hyun Tuesday, the RCEP members finalised the future timeline for negotiations, the MK Business News reported on Wednesday.

They would hold the eighth round of RCEP negotiations in Kyoto, Japan, from June 8-13. The ninth round of negotiations in Myanmar in August while the third economic ministers' meetings will take place in Malaysia in the same month.

Under the agreement, the final negotiations will be held in South Korea in October and the RCEP summit slated for November will conclude the agreement, the report said.

RCEP is a multilateral free trade agreement involving 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asia Nations, South Korea, China, Japan, Australia, India and New Zealand, ensuring member nations' trade liberalisation. South Korea has not joined the TPP, but has been involved in the RCEP as a negotiating member nation since when the negotiations kicked off in November 2012.


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