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Art of the Trade Deal: China-Championed Pact Faces Tricky Talks

Posted February 27, 2017

Under Economic Issues, International Trade Issues

(Karlis Salna & Isabel Reynolds – Bloomberg)

Trade negotiators are under pressure this week to make progress on a blockbuster Asia pact, after Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of a rival Pacific agreement. But officials meeting in Japan face some significant sticking points.

China is championing the 16-nation Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, which does not include the U.S. or Canada. It’s a chance for it to seize the moment amid the U.S. president’s protectionism –evidenced by his withdrawal from the 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership – keeping free trade on track and boosting its global clout.

Still, some nations are uneasy about rushing to get the RCEP done, even with the failure of the TPP. And while the talks should be simpler – the RCEP is more of a traditional trade deal -- there are disputes over tariff cuts and the service sector. Click here to read more.