The Relative Significance of EPAs in Asia-Pacific

Author Name KAWASAKI Kenichi  (Consulting Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. January 2014 14-E-009
Research Project Economic Impacts of Free Trade Agreements: The case of Japan
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This paper analyzes the relative significance of regional Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) in Asia-Pacific. The economy-wide impacts of tariff removals and reductions in non-tariff measures (NTMs) are estimated by using a Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) model of global trade. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) are shown to complement each other rather than be competitors. The income gains of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies as a whole account for 1.2 per cent of regional GDP by the TPP, 2.1 per cent by the RCEP, and 4.3 per cent by the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP). Meanwhile, larger economic benefits are expected from NTMs reductions in addition to tariff removals. It is thus essential to reform domestic markets in order to enjoy greater economic benefits from international EPAs.