Previous Negotiating Rounds and Ministerial Meetings
Intersessional RCEP Ministerial Meeting - 13 July 2015, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Malaysia hosted an Intersessional RCEP Ministerial Meeting on 13 July 2015. RCEP Ministers agreed on key threshold issues to allow market access negotiations on services and investment to commence. Ministers also agreed to establish negotiating groups on electronic commerce, financial services and telecommunications.
Myanmar will host the next round of officials' level negotiations (1-7 August 2015) in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar where these new negotiating groups will meet for the first time. Officials will continue to discuss the guidelines for initial market access offers for goods in Myanmar as well as chapter text across the negotiating agenda.
Seventh and Eighth Rounds of Negotiations – 9-13 February 2015, Bangkok, Thailand; and 5-13 June, 2015, Kyoto, Japan
Over the seventh and eighth rounds of RCEP negotiations, officials focused on expediting work on the core negotiating issues and draft chapter text. A number of countries, including Australia, submitted market access offers on services and investment. Progress was made on narrowing differences between the participating countries on goods, services and investment leading into the Intersessional RCEP Ministerial Meeting to be hosted by Malaysia (13 July 2015).
Sixth Round of Negotiations – 1-5 December 2014, Greater Noida, India
India hosted the sixth round of RCEP negotiations in Greater Noida. India's Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Commerce and Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman opened the meeting with a welcoming address.
Around 550 officials continued negotiations across twelve negotiating groups and made progress on draft chapter text. Negotiators worked to bridge differences on the level of ambition for market access commitments. An expert group on electronic commerce will meet at the next round in Bangkok, Thailand (9-13 February 2015).
Second RCEP Ministerial Meeting – 27 August 2014, Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
Myanmar hosted the Second RCEP Ministerial Meeting on 27 August 2014 in Nay Pyi Taw. Ministers discussed progress to date and urged officials to expedite work on core negotiating issues, including the modality for initial tariff offers and scheduling of services and investment commitments.
Officials will hold intersessional meetings to progress negotiations ahead of the next round in Greater Noida, India (1-5 December 2014). Joint Media Statement of the Second RCEP Ministerial Meeting, 27 August 2014, Nay Pyi Taw, Burma
Fifth Round of Negotiations – 21-27 June 2014, Singapore
Singapore hosted the fifth round of negotiations of the RCEP, which involved meetings of twelve negotiating groups. As it was the last round before the RCEP Ministerial Meeting in August 2014, negotiators focused on key issues for RCEP Ministers' consideration and guidance, including on the scope of the RCEP agreement and the level of ambition for negotiations on tariffs, services and investment.
New negotiating groups on legal and institutional issues, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and standards, technical regulations and conformity assessment procedures met for the first time. Negotiations on goods, services, investment, economic and technical cooperation, intellectual property, rules of origin and customs procedures and trade facilitation continued to intensify as officials sought to narrow differences ahead of the RCEP Ministerial Meeting.
India will host the sixth RCEP round, to be held in New Delhi, India (1-5 December 2014).
Fourth Round of Negotiations – 31 March - 4 April 2014, Nanning, China
China hosted the fourth round of negotiations of the RCEP – a round characterised by deepening discussions across negotiating groups and a sharpened focus on RCEP's scope and levels of ambition for market access.
The 16 participating countries engaged in detailed negotiations on goods, services and investment issues. They continued substantive work on intellectual property, competition, economic and technical cooperation and the approach to scheduling services and investment commitments. Participating countries hold a diversity of views and there is a broad range of interests and varying levels of ambition across the negotiating agenda.
Discussions were held in eleven negotiating groups with almost 500 delegates in attendance. Reflecting the broadening agenda, it was agreed that three new negotiating groups on legal and institutional issues, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and standards, technical regulations and conformity assessment procedures would meet at the next round. The next negotiating round will be held in Singapore (21-27 June 2014).
Third Round of Negotiations – 20-24 January 2014, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Malaysia hosted the third round of the RCEP negotiations on 20–24 January 2014 in Kuala Lumpur. The 16 RCEP participating countries made progress in Kuala Lumpur on core goods, services and investment issues. A number of threshold issues, such as the level of ambition for market access liberalisation, have yet to be resolved.
In line with the agreed Guiding Principles and Objectives for Negotiating the RCEP [PDF], participating countries agreed at the Third Round to establish four new working groups on economic and technical cooperation, competition, intellectual property and dispute settlement.
China will host the fourth round of negotiations in Nanning (31 March to 4 April 2014).
Second Round of Negotiations – 23-27 September, 2013, Brisbane, Australia
Australia hosted the second round of RCEP negotiations on 23-27 September 2013 in Brisbane.
The 16 RCEP participating countries continued their detailed and technical work on trade in goods, trade in services and investment, with a focus on the key elements and structure of the RCEP agreement in these three areas. The meeting agreed to establish two new sub-Working Groups on rules of origin and customs procedures and trade facilitation to commence work at the third round.
Discussions also took place on competition policy, intellectual property, economic and technical cooperation, dispute settlement and other issues in line with the agreed RCEP Guiding Principles.
Malaysia will host the third round of negotiations (20-24 January 2014).
First RCEP Ministerial Meeting – 19 August 2013, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
Economic and Trade Ministers attended the first RCEP Ministerial Meeting on 19 August 2013 in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam.
Ministers welcomed early progress in the negotiations and encouraged officials to build on the momentum already achieved ahead of the second round to be held in Brisbane, Australia (23-27 September 2013).
First Round of Negotiations – 9–13 May 2013, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
The first round of the RCEP negotiations was held on 9–13 May 2013 in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam.
The round focused on developing a clear framework for negotiations on goods, services and investment in line with the agreed Guiding Principles [PDF]. The meeting established a Working Group on Trade in Goods, a Working Group on Trade in Services and a Working Group on Investment. Delegates also held an initial exchange of views on other issues listed in the Guiding Principles.
Participants will report on the progress of the RCEP negotiations at the first RCEP Ministerial Meeting, scheduled to be held in August 2013 in Brunei Darussalam.
Australia will host the second round of negotiations in Brisbane, Australia(23–27 September 2013).
RCEP Launch – 20 November 2012, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Then Prime Minister Julia Gillard joined Leaders from 15 countries of the Asian region in the margins of the East Asia Summit on 20 November 2012 to launch the RCEP negotiations.
ASEAN Economic Ministers Plus FTA Partners' Consultations – August 2012, Phnom Penh
Economic and Trade Ministers politically endorsed the RCEP concept and agreed key elements of RCEP's scope and level of ambition, expressed in the form of the Guiding Principles and Objectives for Negotiating the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. Then Minister for Trade and Competitiveness Dr Emerson noted the importance of addressing traditional trade barriers as well as '21st Century' issues.