There is a growing need to analyse the free trade agreements to understand their impact on the economy and the geopolitical repercussions that follow.
China applied to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and some analysts see it as a Chinese declaration that even with the elimination of tariffs, the country’s products can hold their own now.
China has won a big geopolitical win with the RCEP as the deal improves Asia’s economic connectivity closing to China’s economic orbit as a result of tighter integration.
Trade deals are important, but they are neither necessary nor sufficient for American foreign policy to prevail in the Asia-Pacific region.
Beijing and Gulf states say they are committed to reviving long-dormant talks aimed at reaching a free trade agreement, as they look to strengthen ties and deepen economic cooperation in the face of strained relations with the West.
With RCEP coming into play on January 1, the divergences that started way back in 2013 will reach a tipping point.
The Morrison government is pushing the Biden administration to strike a digital free trade agreement with democracies across the Indo-Pacific in a bid to counter China’s “digital authoritarianism”.
Nowhere is the intersection between geopolitics and geoeconomics more evident than the accession negotiations under the 11-member Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Taipei could not afford to wait to request entry once Beijing got in the game. Yet the CPTPP is at the heart of mapping out Taiwan’s long-term survival, not just a means to remain competitive in global markets.
President Xi Jinping on Thursday pledged a raft of economic reforms as part of China’s efforts to join a Pacific Rim trade pact abandoned four years ago by the US and warned against efforts to “draw ideological lines” in the Asia-Pacific region.
European Parliament’s committee President said that he would continue to push for closer ties between the EU and Taiwan, and advocate for a bilateral investment agreement.
It’s not just the different agreements, per se – the distinctly different models of FTAs are complicating trade regimes in the region.
Southern African countries have rattled the European Union by indicating they might reopen negotiations on a major new, long-range framework for relations between Europe and developing countries that has already been accepted by all sides.
The European Union has postponed the next round of free trade talks with Australia for a second time, the Australian trade minister said, amid simmering anger over Canberra’s decision to cancel a $40 billion contract with France.
For now, New Zealand’s free trade deal with the UK might be about building back butter - but it could end up being more about Beijing.
Until Beijing demonstrates a credible commitment to abiding by the rules and ceases to use its economic might as a tool of coercion against other states, allowing it to join the CPTPP would be a serious mistake.
Sudan’s government confiscated Petronas’s assets on the grounds that they were acquired "through illegal means" during Omar al-Bashir’s regime. Some argue that Sudan is turning on its allies "under the pretext of fighting corruption".
China’s restrictive practices present fundamental problems for its application to join a major pan-Pacific free trade pact, and if it joins before Taiwan there is a risk it could block their application.
CPTPP members will have a robust discussion on China’s application. It’s hard to argue that Beijing’s trade regime will be in line anytime soon with CPTPP disciplines on state-owned enterprises, labor, digital trade, and intellectual property protection, among other concerns.
The European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee adopted a report that urged the EU to begin work on a bilateral investment agreement with Taiwan.