China's investment in ASEAN to rapidly increase
The CAFTA, the world’s largest free trade area of developing countries, started operation on Jan. 1. It covers a population of 1.9 billion and accounts for about 4.5 trillion U.S. dollars in trade volume.
“The FTA is mutually beneficial,” Yi said. “With full consideration of economic development levels and market capacities of both sides, the FTA will advance the regional economic integrity by eliminating barriers of trade and investment.”
Under the FTA, the average tariff on goods from ASEAN countries to China is reduced from 9.8 percent to 0.1 percent. The six original ASEAN members—Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand—slashed the average tariff on Chinese goods from 12.8 percent to 0.6 percent.
By 2015, the policy of a zero-tariff rate for 90 percent of Chinese goods is expected to extend to the four new ASEAN members, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.
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