Getting regional trade right in Central Asia

The Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) was founded in 1985 to provide members with a platform to discuss ways to improve development as well as promote trade and investment opportunities. Around 462 million people — 6.2 per cent of the world’s population — live within the 10 member states of Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. But at a time when the world trading system is moving towards regional economic integration, ECO remains one of the least integrated trade organisations in the world, making up only 2.1 per cent of world trade.

  • China, Australia show how free trade works for mutual gains

    In the new global realities that seem to be tilting towards protectionism and anti-globalization, China and Australia offer a perfect example of how free trade does not lead to tit-for-tat combat, but generates handsome gains for both

  • China FTA review should ditch controversial clause

    “The Australian and Chinese governments’ announcement of a review of the Investment Facilitation Memorandum of Understanding attached to the China-Australia free trade agreement should result in the MOU’s cancellation,“ AFTINET convener Doctor Patricia Ranald said today

  • Barnier: EU Wants Brexit Deal With UK

    The EU's chief Brexit negotiator, Michael Barnier, has said that the EU27 wants to reach a deal with the UK on its "orderly withdrawal" that prepares "the way for a new partnership" and free trade agreement (FTA).

  • Vietnam, Singapore pledge to promote free trade

    Vietnam and Singapore pledged here Thursday to boost free trade, and continue joining regional initiatives including ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), and Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP).

  • New Zealand: PM wants 90% of exports under free trade deals

    New Zealand is looking at deals including with the Gulf States, the European Union and eventually the United Kingdom

  • Australia, China to boost trade with beef making the cut

    Australia and China are expected to sign new bilateral agreements on beef exports, energy and security during a four-day visit by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang that began on Thursday.

  • ASEAN finds free trade a tougher sell in today's environment

    ASEAN's 10 members have fashioned a single market and liberalized trade with Japan, the U.S., Europe, India and Australia. But the U.S., long the standard-bearer for free trade, has turned inward with the advent of the Trump administration. The latest G-20 statement has underlined ASEAN's fears.

  • EU, Japan Making Headway On FTA

    European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has said he is confident that the EU and Japan will reach a deal on a free trade agreement this year.