TOKYO/HANOI — Asian-Pacific leaders representing the nations involved in the proposed Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership will soon discuss reaching a long-awaited agreement by the end of the year, Nikkei learned Friday.
The 15 participating nations will hold a virtual leaders’ summit on Nov. 15 at the earliest. The free trade agreement would be the first that includes Japan, South Korea and China.
But a deal is largely expected to be reached without India, an early participant in the negotiations who pulled out over fears of imports flooding the market. Japan will continue to reach out to India to dilute the influence China will have on the trading bloc.
The negotiations for the RCEP first began in 2013 between the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, along with Japan, China, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and India.
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