Next round of RCEP talks to begin from June 12 in NZ
The Dollar Business Bureau
The proposed Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement’s next round of negotiations will start from June 12 in New Zealand’s city of Auckland.
This round of discussions is vital as this will be followed by a ministerial meet that is to be held in August. Therefore, this time the members are required to work hard on all fronts such as investments, goods and services, according to an official.
The meeting, a week long deliberation, is also expected to discuss on the maximum level a member can remove duties on products, the official added.
The RCEP is a trade deal which aims to cover services, goods, economic and technical cooperation, investments, intellectual property rights and competition.
India has decided to provide more access to its markets for Asean nations, with which the country already has an FTA in place. It has also proposed to remove tariffs and duties on 80 percent of the products for the 10 Asean nations.
In the same way, India has offered to give access to 65 percent of its product space to Japan and South Korea.
However, for Australia, China and New Zealand, New Delhi has proposed to eliminate only 42.5 percent of the products as it does not have any kind of FTA with these countries.
Among the 16 Asian Members of RCEP, India has not offered any duty cuts on steel to Australia, China and New Zealand in the proposed mega-regional Trade Agreement as a part of its goods proposal.
The RCEP negotiation started in November 2012 at Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia.
The 16-member bloc of RCEP consists of 10 Asean members - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam and their six FTA partners – Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand.