The TPP and RCEP: Mega-Trade Agreements for the Pacific Rim
15 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2015 Last revised: 23 Apr 2016
Date Written: April 21, 2016
This article discusses the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Regional Cooperative Economic Partnership (RCEP), and more briefly the third mega-free trade agreement, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) commenting on the progress (or lack thereof) realized with each over the past several years. Only the TPP negotiations are concluded, and under the best of circumstances the TPP will not be in force for all 12 parties for at least several years. Whether the negotiations toward an RCEP and TTIP can be successfully concluded remains uncertain. Still, these mega-trade agreements, in the light of the failure of the WTO’s Doha Round negotiations, are likely to set the standards and agenda for trade negotiations well into the next decade. Each can be expected if successful to encourage trade among the members, and possibly to make it easier for small and medium sized enterprises to participate.
Keywords: international trade, regional trade agreements, TPP, RCEP
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