“RCEP from the middle powers’ Perspective”

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East Asian countries signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) in November 2020. This paper demonstrates the importance of ASEAN centrality in East Asian economic integration and makes a preliminary assessment of the agreement in terms of the four expected roles: liberalization, rulemaking, reducing policy risks, and forming a pro-trade middle power coalition. The comparison with the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) reveals the strengths and weaknesses of RCEP. The paper emphasizes the importance of dynamic aspects of mega-FTAs after being in effect and claims that RCEP must be further developed as an evolving agreement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-170
Number of pages9
JournalChina Economic Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • East Asia
  • Free trade agreement
  • international production networks
  • tariff
  • trade diversion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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