The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat announced that the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, the world’s largest trade deal so far, would enter into force on January 1, 2022.
The Secretariat has received instruments of ratification from six ASEAN countries, namely Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Laos, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam, as well as from four non-ASEAN signatory states of Australia, China, Japan, and New Zealand.
“The expeditious ratification process by signatory states is a true reflection of our strong commitment to a fair and open multilateral trading system for the benefit of the people in the region and the world,” the Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dato Lim Jock Hoi, said.
The implementation of the agreement will provide a tremendous boost to post-Covid-19 economic recovery efforts, the Secretary-General stressed.
RCEP agreement was agreed upon in November 2021 by the 10 member countries of ASEAN and five of their partner countries.
According to the agreement, the implementation of RCEP will begin 60 days after ratification by at least six ASEAN and at least three non-ASEAN countries.