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RCEP: launch of the world’s largest free trade area

It will be the world’s largest free-trade region to date outside the World Trade Organization (WTO): The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) of the Southeast Asian confederation ASEAN together with China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand. Since a set minimum number of member states had ratified the RCEP treaty by mid-November, it is clear that the agreement will come into force on January 1, 2022. The RCEP, with its 15 members, will be China’s first-ever regional trade agreement. It is a huge economic area that will each encompass around 30 percent of global economic output, global trade volume, and global population.

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