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Jakarta Post

Insight: RCEP is about ASEAN’s initiative, not China’s

  • Rocky Intan

    -

PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Wed, December 4, 2019   /  09:15 am
Insight: RCEP is about ASEAN’s initiative, not China’s Unfortunately, at the conclusion of ASEAN Summit in Thailand last month, India announced that it would be withdrawing from the agreement owing to concerns of its trade deficit and anticipated jump in imports. (AFP/Manan Vatsyayana)

Negotiating countries of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) recently agreed on a framework for an agreement, aiming for a final signing early next year. The agreement would have been the largest regional trade pact, comprising around 30 percent of global trade and half of the world’s population. Unfortunately, at the conclusion of ASEAN Summit in Thailand last month, India announced that it would be withdrawing from the agreement owing to concerns of its trade deficit and anticipated jump in imports. In a surprising twist, Japan announced that it would not proceed with the RCEP if India was not part of the agreement. Tokyo sees New Delhi’s participation as beyond just economics. Economics, Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Hideki Makihara stated that India’s inclusion was “meaningful from an economic, political and potentially national s...

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