Economic Regionalization in the Asia-pacific
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Economic Regionalization in the Asia-pacific

Challenges to Economic Cooperation

M. Dutta

This original and comprehensive book provides a unique insight into the development of economic regionalization, with special reference to the Asia-Pacific. It presents international globalization strategies from a historical perspective and then analyses the effects on the development of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). Focusing on APEC itself, the author provides a detailed investigation into its organization and agenda, and thorough personal interviews with some of the most influential people who have worked for APEC.
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Chapter 10: A Conversation with C. FRED BERGSTEN

M. Dutta


Page 110  10  A Conversation with C. FRED BERGSTEN  Q. You have said that APEC is neither European Union, nor NAFTA. We know what it is not. How would you give a positive definition of APEC?  A. It is too early to say how APEC will really evolve. However, based on the blue print or the vision of the Eminent Persons’ Group , I say that APEC is a regional  institution for trade and investment liberalization; as it will be reducing variance within the region, APEC will concurrently be promoting reductions of barriers outside the  region.  The concept of open regionalism is to be appreciated. In the EPG Report, a very specific four­part definition of it has been outlined. It is a concept that we think has  never really been operationalized or defined carefully before. The strategy would be to ensure that APEC, far from causing new problems for the world system, will be  a building block for further liberalization for the global system. To our knowledge, no previous regional arrangement has ever done that. We would see APEC, for  example, offering to extend its own liberalization benefits to any outside countries who agree to liberalize with APEC on a reciprocal basis. The European Union  certainly never did that. NAFTA has certainly never done that. It has never been done before.  There are specific cases where the EU did an arrangement for a free trade area with the ASEAN Free Trade Area [AFTA]. NAFTA may take on specific members,  but...

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