Edited by Peter C.Y. Chow
Chapter 1: Pathways to a Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific: problems and prospects
The forging of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in October 2015 was a major milestone, if seen as part of a continuum towards deepening regional economic integration; and possibly a watershed, if seen to have altered the path in the evolution of Asia Pacific regionalism. The future is always opaque, yet certain seeds have been planted. This book explores the TPP’s implications for the future architecture of the Asia Pacific economic region. The vision of economic regionalism in the Asia Pacific has rarely been concordant with the reality. General peace and the conditions for regional economic development in East Asia emerged only in the 1980s, following China’s historic opening up in the post-Mao era. Up to that point, economic relations in the Asia Pacific featured a hub-and-spoke pattern, with the regional hegemonic power, the United States (US), as the hub, and the East Asian economies as the spokes.