The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) most likely will be signed in March 2018, to come into force in 2019. The 11 countries signing are Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. It will be one of the World's most exacting trade pacts measured by openness to investment from other members, the protection of patents and environmental safeguards. CPTPP breaks ground in setting American-inspired standards and safeguards for everything from online commerce to creative industries. CPTPP is not the only trade deal making progress in Asia. Japan has just concluded a sweeping agreement with the European Union. the Association of South-East Asian Nations is seeking to create a vast free-trade area encompassing China and India, among others. *) If CPTPP becomes successful, question will be whether South Korea, Indonesia and the Philippines might consider joining at a later stage. If that happens, could one rule out that also Britain and even America might want to take part?
*) the Economist 27th January 2018