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Jakarta Post

RCEP countries aim to strike a balance on e-commerce ahead of trade deal conclusion

  • Dian Septiari
    Dian Septiari

    The Jakarta Post

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Jakarta   /   Wed, September 18, 2019   /  01:49 pm
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Trade ministers of ASEAN member countries pose for photograph signing an agreement on the ASEAN Agreement on E-Commerce in Singapore on Nov. 12.(Courtesy of/The Singaporean Trade and Industry Ministry)

The different levels of digital trade development and readiness among the 16 countries currently negotiating the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) have placed e-commerce in a list of top major issues to be finalized in the coming months. Experts have said that balancing the interest of more advanced nations with those who prefer a more cautious approach to the rapidly evolving sector will be key to wrapping up negotiations for the trade deal by the end of this year. “The RCEP that we are negotiating basically covers everything, and one of the chapters covers e-commerce,” Indonesia’s lead negotiator, Iman Pambagyo, told reporters on the margins of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Global Dialogue in Central Jakarta on Tuesday. “But I see a lot of ambiguity here and there because we don't have a multilateral disc...