Li Keqiang attends the third meeting of leaders of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement
On the evening of November 4, local time, Premier Li Keqiang of the State Council attended the third (RCEP) leaders' meeting of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement in Bangkok, Thailand. Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhai Jianlan
Bangkok, 4 Nov (Reporter Baiyang and Zhao Yipu) State Council Premier Li Keqiang attended the third (RCEP) leaders' meeting of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement in Bangkok, Thailand, on the evening of November 4, local time. Leaders of the ten ASEAN countries, as well as South Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and India, attended the meeting. Thai Prime Minister Prayuth presided over the meeting.
Li Keqiang said in his speech that the RCEP negotiations lasted seven years, and today we officially announced the conclusion of the negotiations among the 15 member states as a whole, and also made arrangements for the parties to negotiate and resolve relevant follow-up issues. This marks a major breakthrough in the construction of the East Asian Free Trade area, which has the largest population, the most diverse membership structure and the greatest development potential in the world. In the end, the negotiations took full account of the interests and concerns of all parties and reflected the maximum common divisor of the development aspirations of the participants. This is conducive to regional countries in the face of economic downward pressure, accelerate the process of regional economic integration, but also in the context of rising protectionism, boost the expectation that countries will join hands to resist risk challenges. All parties should make a concerted effort to complete consultations on a few remaining issues by the end of the year, prepare a complete legal text for signature as soon as possible, speed up domestic procedures, and ensure that the agreement will be formally signed at next year's RCEP leaders' meeting. Let the outcome of the negotiations benefit the people of all countries as soon as possible. In the spirit of mutual understanding and accommodation, China is willing to continue consultations with all parties to resolve the problems faced in the negotiations with India, and welcomes India's accession to the agreement as soon as possible.
Leaders of all countries made positive comments on the significant progress made in the RCEP negotiations, and agreed that under the current situation, the completion of the RCEP negotiations is conducive to sending out messages dedicated to building an open world economy and supporting multilateral trade, and improving the regional trade and investment environment. We will promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, help countries better meet challenges, enhance the future development potential of the region, and benefit the people of all countries in the region. The parties look forward to signing the agreement at next year's leaders' meeting.
Xiao Jie attended the meeting.