The first negotiating round for the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework was held Dec. 10-15 in Australia.
IPEF was launched this past spring with the aim of strengthening U.S. ties to the region and creating a stronger, fairer, more resilient economy for families, workers, and businesses. Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam are the current participants, and each of them except India has pledged to take part in all the initiative’s four pillars: trade (which India opted out of), supply chains, clean economy, and fair economy. An initial ministerial meeting held in September outlined the objectives in each of these areas.
Ahead of the recent meetings, U.S. officials shared trade negotiating text with IPEF partners for the following topics: trade facilitation, agriculture, services domestic regulation, and transparency and good regulatory practices. In addition, U.S. officials held detailed conceptual discussions for the following trade topics: environment, labor, digital economy, competition policy, and inclusivity. Also before the negotiating round the Department of Commerce shared text on supply chains and tax and anti-corruption as well as a concept paper on clean economy.
Additional in-person negotiating rounds are expected in 2023 and more details regarding the next round are forthcoming.
For more information on IPEF, please contact Nicole Bivens Collinson at (202) 730-4956 or via email.
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