4 Nov 2019

Jacinda Ardern downplays possible RCEP breakthrough

From Morning Report, 6:10 am on 4 November 2019

Jacinda Ardern has played down the prospect of a breakthrough in the seven-year long R-CEP trade negotiations at the East Asia Summit.

India has been reported as the last hold-out to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership deal first mooted in 2012.

The summit has taken on greater importance with the cancellation of APEC in a fortnight's time due to civil unrest in Chile.

The Prime Minister is in Bangkok with other ministers to discuss regional security issues, sustainable development, climate change and the mammoth 16-country trade deal which, if signed, would cover roughly half of the world's people and more than a quarter of its trade and economic output.