To boost economy, Japan urges Brunei to ratify CPTPP

The Pacific-wide free trade agreement has already come into force in 7 out of the 11 member countries.

Japan’s government is urging Brunei to ratify the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) at the earliest opportunity, as it remains one of four countries that have yet to do so.

The Pacific-wide trade deal involves 11 countries representing 13.4 percent of the global GDP, making it the third largest free trade pact in the world behind the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the European Union.

In an interview Friday, Japanese ambassador to Brunei, Motohiko Kato, said it was important for member states to renew their commitment to multilateral trade amidst the ongoing trade spat between the US and China.

“By joining the agreement, Brunei can improve its international status because you will be showing your determination in protecting the free trade system, including good investment schemes and dispute settlement mechanisms,” he told reporters during a briefing on a visiting Japanese business delegation.

Brunei, Malaysia, Chile and Peru have yet to formally ratify the agreement, which was signed in March 2018, while Japan, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Singapore, New Zealand and Vietnam had already ratified the pact, which came into force at the end of 2018.

“We are always urging [Brunei’s] Ministry of Foreign Affairs to facilitate the necessary internal procedures that would help realise Brunei’s status as a member of the CPTPP”, said Kato, adding that many countries have expressed interest in joining the trade agreement, including Thailand and Indonesia.

Source: The Scoop

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