HK first in line to join trade bloc says Chan

Finance | Avery Chen 23 Nov 2020

Hong Kong hopes to be among the first economies to join the new Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership once it opens its doors to new members, said Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po.

Fifteen Asia-Pacific nations, including China, Japan, South Korea and Australia, signed the mega free trade agreement, covering 30 percent of global gross domestic product, aiming revive Covid-19-hit economies by reducing trade costs.

Chan said joining the RCEP would benefit the Hong Kong's trade in services and investment.

Total bilateral trade between Hong Kong and the 15 RCEP members reached US$765.5 billion (HK$5.97 trillion) in 2019, accounting for 71 percent of the city's total trade value, Chan wrote in a blog post yesterday, adding that Hong Kong had expressed its willingness to join the trade agreement back in 2018.

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