The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement was finally signed last week, after eight long years involving 31 negotiating rounds and eight ministerial sessions. After all that effort, the poor negotiators found that the achievement was greeted with less than unbridled enthusiasm. This seems a bit unfair to us — anyone can pick holes in the RCEP agreement but overall, it will produce tangible benefits for its members while also creating a few geopolitical ripples.

Have a premium account? Sign in to continue reading.

Unlimited access to all stories from $99.9/year*

The latest reporting and analysis from business and investments to news and views on social issues.


  • Simultaneous logins across all devices
  • Instant access to past digital issues
  • Unlimited access to The Edge Malaysia
  • *For annual subscription plan only. T&Cs apply