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TPP and RCEP: What’s Next for Asia-Pacific Trade?

After many years of negotiations, the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement was finalised earlier this year. It is the most wide-ranging trade agreement to be negotiated by Australia. However, there are obstacles to the agreement becoming a reality with both United States presidential candidates stating their opposition. Due to the nature of the agreement, the failure of the US to ratify the agreement would effectively kill the TPP.

At the same time, Australia has been negotiating an equally large trade agreement centred on the Indo-Pacific region that excludes the US. It is known as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement and offers an alternative direction for Australia’s future trade. There are some similarities between the TPP and RCEP, but there are also significant differences.

In an interview held at the AIIA for WA in Perth, Flavia Zimmerman had the opportunity to discuss the two agreements and their prospects of success with Dr Jeffrey Wilson of Murdoch University.


Dr Jeffrey Wilson is a senior lecturer in International Political Economy and fellow of the Asia Research Centre at Murdoch University in Perth, Australia. His academic research specialises in international resource politics and economic regionalism in the Asia-Pacific region.

Interviewed by: Flavia Zimmermann

Filmed and edited by: Nancye Miles-Tweedie


Published August 17, 2016