Times of Oman
Price in RO
24ct / gm
22ct / gm
Forex Rates vs R01
Back to Homepage
Asean, partners plan to set up a giant free trade bloc
November 19, 2012 , 4 : 00 am GST
SAVE THIS ARTICLE
MAKING A POINT: Asean secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan said a successful regional partnership would further cement a shift in global economic power from the West towards Asia :Bloomberg
Southeast Asian nations will launch talks this week for a giant free trade pact with China, Japan, India and other neighbours aimed at easing the region's reliance on the struggling West.
The planned zone will span across 16 countries of the Asia-Pacific that currently account for a third of global trade and economic output, making it the biggest free trade area outside the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
Rajiv Biswas, Asia-Pacific chief economist at IHS Global Insight, described the initiative as strategically very important to the Asia-Pacific as it would help offset weaknesses in the United States and the European Union.
"Fast growth in trade within the Asia Pacific region could significantly mitigate the weak growth prospects in Asia's traditional growth markets in the EU and US," he told AFP.
"The (pact) could provide the framework for accelerating regional trade and investment flows, reducing the dependence of East Asia on the traditional EU and US export markets and boosting trade amongst Asian developing countries."
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen will launch the start of negotiations for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) on Tuesday in Phnom Penh on the final day of a regional summit.
The RCEP would bring together the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations with China, India, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.
Asean secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan said a successful RCEP would further cement a shift in global economic power from the West towards Asia.
"The trend is already here. It's how to consolidate. This one is going to be a big leap forward if we can make it," he told AFP in an interview on Sunday on the sidelines of an Asean leaders' summit.
Diplomats and analysts said the RCEP could also serve as a "counterbalance" to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), another planned free-trade grouping currently being negotiated by the United States and 10 other countries.
US officials hope that the TPP will eventually snowball into a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific that will link economies spanning Latin America and Asia via the United States.
Rate this Article
Rates : 0, Average : 0
Latest in this section
Asian markets mostly lower after upbeat US data
Singapore banks told to boost security after StanChart data theft
World Bank says universal health coverage key in growth
India defiant as food impasse imperils WTO
Beijing second costliest Asian city for expats: Survey
Post a Comment
Did you like this section? Leave a comment!
Your Name :
Your Email Address :
Your Comment :
Enter ImageText here:
No Comments Posted
TOP RATED ARTICLES
The rainbow over the desert sky
Saleh Al Shaibany
India lifts anti-dumping duty on Oman’s polypropylene export
Filipino expats in Oman raise funds for Haiyan victims
Times News Service
‘Sohar Port meets pollution norms’
Fahad Al Mukrashi
Two sentenced to jail in Sohar for corruption
More in News
How to choose your writing form and communicate your creative thoughts
Natasja Engholm - Special to Times of Oman
Indonesia's illegal dentists bite back after ban
Albanian cannabis fiefdom at heart of European traffic
Asia's animators draw inspiration from Miyazaki
Splash 'Forever More'
Times News Service
More in Features
Of Middle East and the Arab winter
France ill at ease with US policy shift in M-E
The harsh reality of mass migration from Syria
Blind obsession with celebrities
Jayanta G Borpujari
Sisi is making Egypt a dangerous place
More in Columns
Get Top news by E-mail.
Copyright © 2012 Muscat Press & Publishing House SAOC. All rights reserved. Times of Oman is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.
For reprint rights contact:
TOO Online Editorial