Singapore signs APAC trade pact, which proceeds without US

Singapore's Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang signed the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) today Mar 9, in Santiago, Chile.

The trade pact – which proceeded without the United States – is signed between Singapore and 10 other countries: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, and Vietnam. 

The CPTPP incorporates all commitments from the original Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), except for a limited number of provisions which have been temporarily suspended.

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The agreement aims to strengthen trade among countries in the Asia-Pacific. This will be done through the substantial elimination of tariffs and non-tariff barriers for goods, improved access for service suppliers in a wide range of sectors, greater facilitation of investments, enhanced access to government procurement contracts, and modern rules to address emerging trade challenges.

As it is an open and inclusive Agreement, the door is open for like-minded parties to join the CPTPP once it has entered into force.

The press release by MTI noted that CPTPP is a key regional agreement which will complement Singapore’s existing network of bilateral free trade agreements. It will expand Singapore’s economic space, boost trade and investment flows, make it easier for our companies to do business in the region, and unlock economic development opportunities.

“The signing of the CPTPP is a concrete demonstration of the signatories’ commitment to the collective goals of greater trade liberalisation, regional economic integration, and better opportunities for our people," said Mr Lim. "This is a significant step toward realising the benefits of the Agreement. Singapore companies will be better placed to tap on growth opportunities and increased market access in the Asia-Pacific. With its high standards and business-facilitative trade rules, the CPTPP establishes a new regional standard for future free trade agreements." 

CtoI News Desk
CtoI News Desk – CtoI

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