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RCEP negotiations continue

Released at: 17:38, 28/02/2017

RCEP negotiations continue

Source: Kyodo

First round of negotiations since US withdrew from TPP takes place.

by Quoc Uy

Senior officials from Vietnam and 15 other Asia-Pacific countries met in Kobe, Japan on February 27 for the next round of negotiations over the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), according to a report from the Vietnam News Agency (VNA).

This is the first round of RCEP negotiations since the US withdrew from the TPP.

RCEP member nations include the ten ASEAN members and six dialogue partners: China, India, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.

Delegates discussed tariffs in the new economic zone and how advanced countries would assist emerging economies, together with common rules on investment and e-commerce.

Iman Pambagyo, Director General of International Trade Negotiations at Indonesia’s Trade Ministry and chair of the meeting, was quoted by VNA as saying the talks are key to establishing regional free trade agreements and contributing to promoting global trade.

RCEP negotiations kicked off in 2012. Members are estimated to account for 29 per cent of global trade, or $9.5 trillion. Within the framework of the RCEP, members hope to eliminate 80 per cent of tariffs and 92 per cent among ASEAN nations.

After 16 rounds of negotiations, participating countries have so far reached agreement in the fields of economic and technological cooperation and assistance to small- and medium-sized enterprises.

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