March 3, 2019
From March 2 (Sat.) to 3 (Sun.), 2019, Mr. Hiroshige Seko, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, visited the Kingdom of Cambodia to attend the Seventh Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Intersessional Ministerial Meeting. Taking this opportunity, Minister Seko held bilateral meetings with: H.E. Ms. Chutima Bunyapraphasara, Acting Minister of Commerce, Thailand; H.E. Mr. Enggartiasto Lukita, Minister of Trade, Indonesia; H.E. Mr. Chan Chun Sing, Minister for Trade and Industry, Singapore; and H.E. Mr. Shri Suresh Prabhu, Minister of Commerce and Industry, India, and held discussions on RCEP negotiations, WTO reforms and bilateral economic ties, respectively.
1. Seventh RCEP Intersessional Ministerial Meeting
Minister Seko attended the Seventh RCEP Intersessional Ministerial Meeting held on March 2 and held discussions with other participating ministers concerning future approaches to advancing RCEP negotiations toward conclusion in 2019, a goal set by the Joint Leader’s Statement released in November 2018.
Specifically, the ministers appreciated the progress in the negotiations involving market access and rules, a result of negotiators meeting immediately before the ministerial meeting. Meanwhile, they confirmed future tasks that RCEP participating countries (RPCs) should tackle.
The ministers agreed that PRCs will hold additional negotiation meetings on the fields about which discussions should be accelerated, in particular, and that they will hold the next ministerial meeting in August 2019.
2. Ceremony to Celebrating the Signing of the Protocol to Amend the ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership (AJCEP) Agreement
On March 2, Minister Seko attended the Ceremony to Celebrating the Signing of the Protocol to Amend the AJCEP Agreement. The effectuation of the protocol is expected to fortify Japan-ASEAN economic ties through further liberalization and facilitation of trade in services and investments.
3. Bilateral meetings
Minister Seko held bilateral meetings with: Acting Minister Chutima, Thailand; Minister Enggartiasto, Indonesia; Minister Chan, Singapore; and Minister Prabhu, Indi, and exchanged views on: approaches for conclusion of RCEP negotiations in 2019; WTO reforms; and bilateral economic ties, respectively.
Bilateral meeting with Acting Minister Chutima, Thailand
Bilateral meeting with Minister Enggartiasto, Indonesia
Bilateral meeting with Minister Chan, Singapore
Bilateral meeting with Minister Prabhu, India
Divisions in Charge
- Information on the RCEP Ministerial Meeting and the AJCEP:
Economic Partnership Division & Asia and Pacific Division, Trade Policy Bureau
- Information on the bilateral meeting with India:
Southwest Asia Office, Trade Policy Bureau