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第414期
(2020/11/26出刊)
亞太15國簽署RCEP 全球最大貿易集團誕生

 On November 15th, fifteen Asian and Pacific countries virtually signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement, or RCEP. The agreement creates the world’s largest trading bloc, covering 2.2 billion people and including nearly a third of global economic activity. The deal, which was first proposed in 2012, will lower tariffs on trade among the signatories and open services trade.
 RCEP includes the 10 ASEAN countries plus China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, but not the United States. India dropped out because of the concerns it would not be able to protect domestic industry as well as its agricultural sector. The agreement is also expected to help China, Japan and South Korea finally reach a trilateral free trade deal after years of struggling to bridge their differences.
 Analysts see the agreement as a huge advantage for China in extending its influence, but the deal is not likely to have the same level of integration as the EU. Chinese premier Li Keqiang described the deal as “a victory of multilateralism and free trade.”

 十一月十五日,十五個亞太國家以視訊的方式簽署了《區域全面經濟夥伴協定》。該協定催生了全球最大的貿易集團,涵蓋二十二億人口,以及全球近三分之一的經濟活動。《區域全面經濟夥伴協定》在二○一二年首度被提出,正式上路後將降低簽署國之間的貿易關稅,並開放服務業貿易。
 《區域全面經濟夥伴協定》的成員國包括十個東協會員國,加上中國、日本、南韓、澳洲、紐西蘭等五國,但不包含美國。印度擔心加入《區域全面經濟夥伴協定》後無法保護本土產業及農業,因此最終選擇退出。該協定有望協助中國、日本與南韓達成三邊自由貿易協定,化解多年來談不攏的分歧。
 分析人士認為,該協定為中國創造巨大優勢,擴大其影響力;但在該協定的架構下,此經濟體的整合程度不可能像歐盟一樣。中國國務總理李克強表示,《區域全面經濟夥伴協定》是「多邊主義與自由貿易的一大勝利」。