China's entry into CPTPP will have big impact on region — MITI

A Chinese port. Malaysia has a free trade agreement (FTA) with China via the ASEAN-China FTA. (Photo by Reuters)

A Chinese port. Malaysia has a free trade agreement (FTA) with China via the ASEAN-China FTA. (Photo by Reuters)

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): China’s official announcement that it wants to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) will lead to a major economic impact on trade agreements.

Senior Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said with Malaysia as a major trading partner of China, the economic giant’s policies and development agenda will have an impact on Malaysia and other countries in the region.

Malaysia will benefit from the CPTPP, which is expected to be ratified soon, he said in a reply to Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing (PDP-Bintulu), who asked about the impact of China’s entry into the CPTPP on Malaysia’s economy.

“We anticipate that China will have ‘accession negotiations’ with Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) countries in early next year for the purpose,” he said.

Malaysia has a free trade agreement (FTA) with China via the ASEAN-China FTA.

“Under the CPTPP, China would need to offer market access without early exceptions whereby it needs to make more comprehensive and high-quality market access and fulfil CPTPP standards.

“Therefore, the expected wider and more comprehensive market access to China via its participation in the CPTPP soon will benefit Malaysia [more] compared to the ASEAN-China FTA,” he said.

Citing the “rules of origin” example, Azmin said each product that is recognised as from Malaysia or a CPTPP member country would get preferential duty treatment.

“The entry of China into the CPTPP will enable our manufacturers and producers to use raw materials from China to produce final products which will be considered for preferential duty,” he added.

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