India’s Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar reaffirmed his country’s confidence in not participating in the world’s largest trade pact, the China-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), in remarks on Tuesday, suggesting that China had not presented “the full picture” of what the pact entails in an honest way.
The RCEP binds 15 nations — including key American allies like Australia, South Korea, and Japan — and a third of the world’s GDP in a trade agreement that expands China’s ability to do business in those countries. The deal allows for shipping products manufactured in participating countries much more easily, limiting requirements for certifying the origin of products. This benefits China greatly given the large percentage of the world’s manufacturing capacity that it controls.
The deal also notably does not impose any human rights, labor rights, or environmental requirements on the participating countries, key for China as the world’s leading concentration camp