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Regional economic integration in East Asia: Prospect and jurisprudence
- Regional economic integration in East Asia: Prospect and jurisprudence
- Choi W.-M.
- Ewha Authors
- SCOPUS Author ID
- Issue Date
- Journal Title
- Journal of International Economic Law
- vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 49 - 77
- SSCI; SCOPUS
- There has been a veritable explosion of regional trade agreements ('RTAs') in the last 15 years or so. Nearly every country in the world became a member of one or more RTAs. The exception was Northeast Asia. But, as China, Japan, and Korea move toward regionalism, discarding their single-track approach, the East Asian region is expected to become a web of multiple RTAs in the upcoming decade. The WTO Agreement establishes certain rules for regionalism that help realize the 'building bloc' idea. These rules can be summarized as the external, internal, and procedural requirement. It is true that some of these requirements are quite vaguely expressed and that application of these rules has been loose. As a result, de facto ignorance of GATT discipline and the phenomenon of the spread of 'partial' RTAs have developed. Hence, in order for regionalism to play a truly complementary role for multilateralism, those rules ought to be clarified and observed. It should not be forgotten that the main beneficiary of WTO-consistent integration in East Asia would be none other than the East Asians themselves. The East Asian countries must bear this in mind during the integration process.
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