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Bangkok Post International Forum 2019

Thursday November 21, 2019


ASIA 2020: TRADE WARS, RCEP AND ECONOMIC TRENDS

Welcome to the Bangkok Post International Forum 2019, November 21, 2019


Supachai Panitchpakdi, the former director general of WTO and former secretary-general of UNCTAD: Dispute settlement mechanism in the World Trade Organisation cannot function due to the US-China trade war. 

The rise of the protectionism is the trend that threatens the world trade and economic growth. 

"It is an alarming trend."

He emphasised the rise of the protectionism that the world needs to tackle.

 

Supachai Panitchpakdi, the former director general of WTO and former secretary-general of UNCTAD

Reviving the trading system and giving incentives to the private sector for quality investment projects are among what all governments need to do.

"We have to nurture the multilateral system" and reform is still needed in the WTO with "concerted efforts."

Asian countries should expand their global supply chain to other parts of the world.

But all countries need to import and export to boost the global growth.

Resolving the geopolitical issues around the world, including the South China Sea, is the main agenda this year.

For next year, the world is still affected by trade disputes and geopolitical conflicts.

"I don't think anybody will benefit from the dispute between the US and China dispute", Supachai said, adding that included Asean.


Supachai on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership:

RCEP will benefit all members as it will boost growth and foster economic cooperation.

Supachai on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership:

"It's a pity now that India opted out," Supachai said and urged other members to convince India to return to the RCEP.

 

Auramon Supthaweethum, director-general of the Department of Trade Negotiations:

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership will eventually be signed to create one of the largest free trade areas.

RCEP will be a "high-quality" FTA as the pact is comprehensive.

"It supports participating countries" by enhancing competitiveness among others.

 

Akihiko Tamura, deputy director-general of the Trade Policy Bureau, Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry

Leaders have shown strong will in their statement to move forward on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership pact, although it could not be signed in Bangkok.

RCEP is "the 16-country framework" that must include India and RCEP is an important "ingredient" for Japan.

RCEP also tests the Asean leadership.

 

Atsushi Taketani, president, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO Bangkok)

More Japanese companies felt the negative impact of the Sino-US trade war.

Japanese companies will benefit from the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement.

 

Michael MacDonald, Chief Digital Officer, Huawei Southeast Asia

Technology is an opportunity for countries to leapfrog.

Education is needed to equip people in Asean and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership area with skills and knowledge of 5G and digital economy for their benefits.

 

Shiqiang Lin, CEO, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Thai) Plc

More Chinese companies are considering relocating their bases to Thailand and other Asean countries after the Sino-US trade war.

 

K V Rao, Resident Director – Asean, Tata Sons Limited

India needs some forms of protection for Indian companies, especially SMEs as they play a key role in its economy.

India is still an agriculture economy that could be threatened by other farm-exporting countries like Australia and New Zealand.

 

Auramon Supthaweethum, director-general of the Department of Trade Negotiations

"India is still on board" on the 16-member Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement.

 


Akihiko Tamura, deputy director-general of the Trade Policy Bureau, Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry

"For Japan, RCEP is a 16-country framework."



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