Today, final wording of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership was agreed upon. The negotiations began in 2013, and it is a free trade agreement involving Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam. Of the original group of negotiators, only India has declined to sign on to the treaty.
The formal signing is slated for 2020. This treaty further entrenches some ties from the CPTPP (Comprehensive and Progressive agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership), and effectively provides trade routes between the signatories of the two agreements… expanding free markets for all of Asia into Canada and Mexico, and vice versa. The United States, which pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal and effectively precipitated the CPTPP, may also benefit because of the Canada-Mexico-United States Trade Agreement, if that can be codified into law in the United States despite the current delays. The prior agreement, NAFTA, would have provided immediate benefits.
Two other summits of note are expected to shape Asian policy in December. A yearly trilateral meeting between China, Japan and South Korea is scheduled to be held in China (the locations rotate throughout the attending nations) with hope for continued movement on the frigid relations between the three nations.
Also, according to the Japan Times, Seoul officials are reporting that North Korea is pushing for a new summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un, tentatively scheduled for the end of the year.