An ambition Asian economy a conglomerate RCEP, covers a third of the global economy, very often miss deadlines due to varying degrees of ambition among the members that include the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Leader of region began talks in 2013 and the initial goal was to wrap them up in 2015.
Leaders from 16 Asia-Pacific nations including Japan, China and India said Wednesday they will now seek a free trade agreement in 2019, missing a year-end deadline amid disagreements over tariffs and other politically sensitive issues
Delayed India decision has led ministers from 16 Asia-Pacific nations to give up on their goal of reaching a broad agreement by the end of this year on tariff cuts.
The officials are meeting in Singapore to discuss a free trade pact known as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, or RCEP.
India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu has told japan media he intends to place importance on his country’s national interests, before rushing toward a deal.
Prabhu said, “The spirit in which we participate in it is the spirit that we must benefit. Obviously no country is going to join the trade deal unless that country itself benefits to begin with.”
Prabhu also stressed the need for taking time in negotiations. He said the participating nations shouldn’t seal a deal immediately, if even they’re keen to do so.
The leaders of RCEP nations are also meeting on Wednesday. They are expected to confirm their aim to reach a full agreement by the end of next year.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, who held the press conference in Beijing alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, also announced that the two countries had signed over 500 business deals during Abe’s ongoing visit to China, the first by a Japanese leader in seven years.
A series of cooperation agreements were signed, including reviving a currency-swap deal dropped in 2013, while Li also called for an early conclusion to an Asia-Pacific nations trade pact that includes 16 countries but not the United States.
10 ASEAN countries are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.
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