Investment Provisions in Regional Trading Arrangements in Asia: Relevance, Emerging Trends, and Policy Implications

Abstract: This paper summarizes the conceptual rationale for investment liberalization to fully exploit the potential of regional trading arrangements. It goes on to examine the treatment of investment in emerging FTAs/RTAs in the Asia-Pacific region and the specific investment provisions and their consistency with the existing multilateral provisions on investment, viz. WTO’s TRIMs Agreement. The provisions of ASEAN framework on investment area and industrial cooperation are summarized in Section 4. Section 5 briefly examines the trends in India’s RTAs policy in Asia and the emerging patterns of efficiency-seeking industrial restructuring unleashed by it. Finally Section 6 concludes the paper with a few remarks on the importance of a broader framework for regional economic integration.