RCEP to Facilitate Recovery from COVID-19 Pandemic

Economists said the Philippines and other member countries are expected to recover faster from the recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic with the signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement.

Frederic Neumann, co-head of Asian economics research at HSBC, said RCEP would account for more than half of the global gross domestic product by 2030 and would provide a platform for meaningful integration in the coming years.

Neumann said the new deal also aims to streamline the various overlapping preferential trading arrangements that most RCEP members already have with each other by establishing common trade rules, helping reduce trade costs for businesses. 

Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation chief economist Michael Ricafort said the world’s largest free trade agreement offers wider market opportunities for Philippine exporters and service providers amid the pandemic.

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