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Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership: Implications, Challenges and Future Growth of East Asia and ASEAN

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is the largest free trade agreement in 2020, completed on 15 November 2020, comprising 10 members of ASEAN (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) and five other regional countries that ASEAN has existing free trade agreements: Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea, and New Zealand.[1][2] Currently, it is the largest trading block in the world consisting of a combined population of 2.2 billion people (30% of the world population), total regional gross domestic product (GDP) of around $38,813 billion (30% of global GDP in 2019), and nearly 28% of global trade.

It sets an important agenda for trade and investment in global trade in terms of opening large domestic market (demand), releasing huge resources for trade and investment, and creating dynamic regional and global value-chain activities.

The RCEP as a 'living' agreement will be able to create a wider regional integration agenda to address key contemporary issues such as the environment and climate change, skills development, green transformation, and developing digital and smart urban centres. ASEAN centrality, as highlighted by the RCEP framework, is critical for the post-pandemic recovery and structural transformation of the region. 

As part of the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) research project, this workshop aims to address the structure of the RCEP in terms of the complexity of the RCEP commitments modalities and mechanism, it explores the various elements of the agreement and discusses the key potential implications to the integration process in the region. For example, it will carefully examine the commitments and compare them with those of other agreements, including the CPTPP. The project underlines some key features of the agreement and analyses how these could strengthen regional integration. The impact of businesses, behind-the-border issues, and the domestic capacity of the respective RCEP member countries will also be discussed, in addition to a formal assessment of the potential benefits of the RCEP. Finally, this study also attempts to address emerging issues especially with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic recovery.

The workshop, organised by ERIA in collaboration with the Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia as a side-event for Cambodia ASEAN Chairmanship, will also include a book launch titled 'Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership: Implications, Challenges and Future Growth of East Asia and ASEAN'.

Event Details

  • Date: Monday, 14 March 2022
  • Time: 8:30 AM- 3:30 PM (Jakarta time, UTC+7)

Read the Press Release

Download the Monograph

Relive the Webinar

Opening Session

  • Professor Hidetoshi Nishimura, President of ERIA
  • HE Mr Pan Sorasak, Minister of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia 

Launching of the ERIA RCEP 

Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership: Implications, Challenges, and Future Growth of East Asia and ASEAN 

Panel Session 1: Implications and Challenges of RCEP

Moderator: HE Mr Bora Samheng, Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia

RCEP and Regional Integration: Potential Growth

  • Prof Fukunari Kimura, ERIA and Keio University

History, Negotiations, and Structure of RCEP

  • Dr Aladdin D. Rillo, ERIA
  • Anna Maria Rosario D. Robeniol, ASEAN Secretariat
  • Salvador M. Buban, ERIA

The Implications of RCEP for Asian Regional Integration

  • Dr Shiro Armstrong, Australian National University
  • Prof Peter Drysdale, Australian National University

 

Panel Session 2: Impact of RCEP on East Asia

Moderator: HE Penn Sovicheat, Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia

Impact of RCEP: A Global Computational General Equilibrium (CGE) Simulations

  • Prof Ken Itakura, Nagoya City University

Potential Impact of RCEP and Structural Transformation of Cambodia

  • Vutha Hing, University of Adelaide
  • Ea Hai Khov, Ministry of Economy and Finance, Kingdom of Cambodia
  • Bunroth Khong, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia
  • Seychanly Tith, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia
  • Prof Shandre M Thangavelu, Sunway University and University of Adelaide

Comparison of RCEP and Other Free Trade Agreements

  • Prof Innwon Park, Korea University

Panel Session 3: RCEP, Pandemic Recovery, and Future Directions

Moderator: Dr Puthsodary Tat, Royal University of Law and Economics, Kingdom of Cambodia

The Post COVID-19 and the RCEP: Post-Pandemic Recovery in East Asia

  • Prof Shujiro Urata, ERIA
  • Prof Shandre M. Thangavelu, Sunway University and University of Adelaide
  • Dr Dionisius A. Narjoko, ERIA

RCEP Services Liberalization: Key Features and Implications

  • Dr Ramonette B. Serafica, Philippines Institute for Development Studies (PIDS)
  • Dr Intan M. Ramli, ERIA

 

Panel Discussion on Cambodian Economy

Moderator: Prof Shandre Mugan Thangavelu, Sunway University and University of Adelaide

  • HE Sim Sokheng, Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia
  • HE Chan Sopheap, Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Economy and Finance
  • H.E. Meng Nimol, Deputy Director-General, Cambodian Chamber of Commerce, Kingdom of Cambodia

Closing Remarks

  • Prof Fukunari Kimura, Chief Economist, ERIA

 

CONCEPT NOTE AND PROGRAMME

REGISTER NOW

[1] India has opted out of the agreement, but with some provisions to join RCEP in future.

[2] The ASEAN Framework for RCEP was adopted by the ASEAN Leaders during the 19th ASEAN Summit in November 2011 in Bali, Indonesia. The Joint Declaration of Ministers for launch of RCEP negotiations was done on 20 November 2012 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia during the 21st ASEAN Summit.

Starting Date

14 March 2022

End Date

14 March 2022

Category

Workshop

Location

Hybrid event

Contact Info

Hardianti


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