China, ROK, Japan end joint study on trilateral FTA

Updated: 2011-12-16 20:01


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PYEONGCHANG, South Korea - Delegates from China, the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan concluded a joint study on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) among the three countries (CJKFTA) in Pyongchang on Friday.

A statement, relating to general trade and economic relations, trade in goods, trade in services, investment and other issues, was issued after the conclusion of the meeting.

The combined GDP of the three countries accounts for approximately 20 percent of the world's total, but the potential for the substantial economic integration has not to be exploited yet among the three countries, the statement said.

It also said that the trilateral FTA will not only expand bilateral and trilateral trade as well as investment with tariffs and non-tariff measures eliminated or gradually reduced, but also to provide a comprehensive and institutional framework,  leading to a win-win-win situation for the three countries.

At the joint study, the three sides recommend the governments to decide on how to proceed with a possible trilateral FTA and to announce the course of action, such as a time-frame and a road-map guiding the negotiations.

The "Joint Study Report" will be released early before the Trilateral Summit to be held in China, according to the statement.

Chong Quan, chief Chinese delegate to the meeting, told Xinhua that China expected that the leaders of the three countries would announce the launching of the trilateral FTA negotiations as early as possible.

The trilateral FTA will bring exact benefit not only to the three countries but also to the Asian region and the whole world at large, Chong said.

Building on the trilateral joint research from 2003 to 2009, leaders of the three countries reached a consensus during the trilateral summit held in October, 2009 that the three countries would conduct the joint study for the CJKFTA among the government officials, business and academic participants.

After the Study was launched in May, 2010, the leaders of the three countries decided to accelerate the joint study so that the study would be concluded before the end of the year 2011.