Asian Trade Pact Covering One-Third of Global Economy Takes Effect

The RCEP, inked in November 2020, is now in force for China and the nine other countries that were first to ratify the agreement.

An agreement to create the world’s largest free trade zone took effect Saturday, bringing together 15 Asia-Pacific countries that cover nearly a third of the world’s economy.

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), inked in November 2020 after eight years of negotiation, went into force for China and the nine other countries that were first to ratify the agreement: Japan, New Zealand, Australia and six members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) — Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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