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Zhao Jingshuo: From rule-following to rule-making, the RECP agreement opens a new era of trade in China

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Zhao Jingshuo: From rule-following to rule-making, the RECP agreement opens a new era of trade in China

January 11
18:27 2021

National Treasury news shows that on November 15, 2020, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (hereinafter collectively referred to as: RCEP) was officially signed.

Some experts believe that the results of RCEP will directly benefit consumers and industrial enterprises, and fully drive the full recovery and development of the economies of countries after the epidemic, which is an important step in China’s transformation from rule compliance to rule making.

Strong binding at the national level to accelerate the process of creating a community of destiny

The reporter learned from People’s Daily on November 15 that RCEP has 15 member countries, including China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and ASEAN 10 countries, is the world’s largest free trade agreement. The total population of its members, economic volume, total trade account for about 30% of the global total.

Win-win development is one of the major highlights of RCEP. According to public information, tariff reduction policies will be implemented among RCEP member countries. The agreement commitment of “reducing to zero tariff immediately and reducing to zero tariff within ten years” has laid the foundation for the free trade zone to achieve phased achievements in construction in a short time.

The strong binding of economic interests at the macro level not only gives the member countries of RCEP a greater opportunity to survive the winter of the COVID-19 pandemic and usher in brand new development, but also further promotes the process of building a community of human destiny, which provides a solid backing for the complementary advantages and comprehensive upgrading of various industries thereafter.

Emerging from trade dilemmas and embarking on a new era of globalization

Powerful capitalist countries, led by the United States, have always been suppressive of China. This is especially true in recent years. Several trade wars have brought China a huge economic blow.

At the same time, the WTO multilateral economic and trade governance system has come to a standstill, and the spread of protectionism and trade frictions have created an extremely serious international trade situation. Therefore, countries urgently need an agreement that can adjust Asia-Pacific economic integration and global trade rules.

The emergence of the RCEP has well addressed this pain spot. In the meantime, from being invited to participate in the RCEP agreement to becoming its key member, China has not only effectively promoted the process of solving the current trade dilemma, but also enhanced its international status, fully demonstrating to the outside world its image of “peaceful coexistence, hand in hand with progress and development”.

Breaking down trade barriers to help countries recover their industries

As a successor to the U.S.-led TPP, the RCEP, which was developed with China’s participation, has made huge breakthroughs and innovations in terms of both the scope of opening and the degree of integration. Among them, the most significant is the implementation of the policy of gradual exemption of import and export tariffs in various industries.

In this way, enterprises in various countries are able to minimize their costs when trading across borders, thus translating them into price advantages, which not only drives the overall sales of products, but also provides a strong guarantee for the development of new ideas for products in the importing countries and the improvement of people’s quality of life.

In addition, COVID-19 has now caused a period of economic weakness. Lowering the threshold and cost of foreign trade and breaking the barriers of the old trade protection will not only accelerate the rapid economic recovery of countries, but also promote the depth of cooperation and development in all aspects in the future.

Although China is not the leader of RCEP agreement, it also plays an extremely important role in it. China’s transformation is from chaser to initiator, follower to maker. Among them, the innovative trade concept and the principle of developing hand in hand not only show China’s boldness of vision to the outside world, but also accelerate the recovery of the global economy, making a perfect beginning for the 2021.

(The author, Zhao Jingshuo, is a contract photographer of China Gallery, a member of Shaanxi Youth Literature Association, and a full member of Shaanxi Writing Society, who has worked for large central media, central enterprises, central regulatory agencies, and wholly state-owned enterprises, etc.)

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