Palm oil would be at the top of Malaysia’s agenda on its free trade talks under the Asean with the European Union (EU).
Singapore’s Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang said on Thursday all ASEAN members must keep pursuing deeper economic integration and liberalization so that citizens can enjoy the benefits of their collective community efforts.
The Ministry of international Trade and Industry (Miti) said the session would also be discussing implementation of the 2017-2018 Asean-EU trade and investment work programme, stock-take on Asean-EU relations and exchange views on the recent global and regional economic developments.
Large portion of Indian tea sector is skeptical about outcome of free trade agreement of India with ASEAN countries. After the agreement comes into full effect, duty cut in import of the green beverage is feared to cause severe adverse impact on Indian tea production sector.
China has affirmed Asean’s core role in negotiations for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
The leaders of three of Asia’s biggest economies will aim to advance a free-trade agreement and economic cooperation, putting territorial rows and military tensions aside at an expected trilateral summit in April, Chinese diplomatic observers said.
The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, or CPTPP, is going ahead in the absence of the US is a testament to Japan’s role in shepherding the tough negotiations through some tumultuous times.
The members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations have mounted pressure on India for clinching a liberalised pact in goods and services also involving six other countries, including China, by this year.
Sri Lanka and Indonesia had agreed to study a free trade agreement during a state visit of President Joko Widodo to Colombo.
China is redoubling its effort to seal free trade agreements with many countries. It has already covered nearly 21 countries, contrary to 20 covered by the US.
At the World Economic Forum in Davos, India is likely to meet a lot of offers for free trade and investment deals. With US, France and Canada leaders meeting their Indian counterpart in coming few months, it is likely that India may enter into a free trade agreement with them. Though, it will be interesting to know how Prime Minister Modi go ahead with these offers.
India’s Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu said RCEP negotiations may be taking longer than expected because of the economic diversity among member countries.
The year 2017 began with uncertainties in the global environment. On trade policy, the year did not end on any clearer terms than it started with. Uncertainty remains over several ongoing negotiations with different sets of countries. It is most visible at the World Trade Organisation (WTO), in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and in India’s bilateral trade relations with Europe and the US.
Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita kicked off the trade mission on Monday to two South Asia countries — India and Pakistan — taking with him 61 businesspeople to explore the cooperation with their counterparts in the two countries.
Singapore has assumed the ASEAN 2018 chair. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has announced that his theme for the undertaking would be "Resilient and Innovative". It will be challenging for Singapore amidst multilateral trade and the Rohingya calamity in the region.
As Singapore becomes chairman of grouping, it hopes to get members to share common vision on terrorism, climate change and trade.
The fourth round of the Indonesia-European Union Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement is scheduled to be held in Surakarta in February.
Indonesia seeks to initiate negotiations on trade agreements under both bilateral and regional schemes this year to help jack up the country’s exports.
It is highly probable that the Asean countries will use the official visit to gain some political mileage and push India towards steeper commitments on dismantling tariffs and improve market access commitments to RCEP members.