China, Japan, S.Korea agree to start free-trade talks

The leaders of China, Japan and South Korea agreed Sunday to start talks this year on a free-trade area, saying it would boost the economies of the entire region.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said closer regional economic integration in response to a slow global recovery and an overall rise in trade protectionism would help unlock new growth potential.

"Northeast Asia is the most economically vibrant region in the world. So there is huge potential for our three countries to have closer trade and investment cooperation," Wen told reporters in Beijing.

"The establishment of a free-trade area will unleash the economic vitality of our region and give a strong boost to economic integration in East Asia."

China, Japan and South Korea combined have the world's largest economy, ahead of the European Union, when measured by purchasing power parity.

Wen made the remarks after meeting in the Chinese capital with South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda.

In Sunday's meeting, the three nations also signed an investment agreement concluded earlier this year after 13 rounds of negotiations stretching over five years.

"To further facilitate mutual investment, it is important to have a legal framework. It will help our businesses and mutual investment," South Korea's Lee said.

A free-trade area among Northeast Asia's three major economies has been on the trilateral agenda for the past decade, beginning with an agreement among the three in late 2002 to launch a feasibility study on the issue.

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Fight vs online libel goes to the UNHCR Ederic Eder, Yahoo! Southeast Asia - The Inbox
    Fight vs online libel goes to the UNHCR

    Commentary By Ellen T. Tordesillas Last Tuesday, while in Baguio City for their summer session, the Supreme Court denied all the Motions for Reconsideration on Online Libel which it upheld in its Feb. 18, 2014 decision. It will be recalled … Continue reading → …

  • Book chronicles efforts for PWD-friendly polls VERA Files - The Inbox
    Book chronicles efforts for PWD-friendly polls

    By Melissa Luz Lopez, VERA Files A lot have been done but much still need to be done for a hassle-free  participation of  Persons with Disabilities in elections,according to a book published by The Asia Foundation (TAF) and supported by … Continue reading → …

  • The other side of Palawan Ellen Tordesillas, Contributor - The Inbox
    The other side of Palawan

    By Ellen T. Tordesillas Mention Palawan and what comes to mind are Underground River and El Nido in the northern side of this richly-blessed province from its capital, Puerto Princesa. Three weeks ago, we went to the southern side- in … Continue reading → …

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options