Economic Integration in the Asia-Pacific: In Search of Model

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2017-61-11-57-65

M. Potapov (,
Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, 23, Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation


The article analyzes two different models of economic integration in the Asia-Pacific region. The first model is the Asia-Pacific Free Trade Area (FTAAP) being discussed at the APEC forum over the last ten years. Another model is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP), formed under the aegis of the USA in the framework of negotiations to reach an appropriate agreement. Author after making a quick analysis shows the usefulness of the different models in the Asia-Pacific region at the present stage of integration. Some models, such as bilateral free trade agreements or TTP, definitely stimulate the progress of multilateral negotiations to create an FTAAP within APEC area. One can talk about the presence of their complementarity in a healthy competition. Such competition, particularly between APEC and the TTP, appears to be not of a destabilizing nature. Also, do not expect in this regard any political or economic divisions in the region. US-based TTP, in our opinion, will not be the sole foundation for the formation of the future free open trade and investment area in the APEC region, and will serve as one of its “building blocks”, in addition to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) as example. In particular, the agreement within the TTP or RCEP can be used in the future in an agreement of FTAAP. According to the author’s estimates, in the medium term, possibly in the third decade of this century, the area of free trade and investment will be formed in the APEC region. This model will reflect the specifics of the region. Interaction of the APEC member countries and coordination of their policies will be flexible, pragmatic, and what is especially important — will be a voluntary consensual (in the ASEAN style). The author seems most probable conclusion of comprehensive agreement on the free trade and investment area on the basis of sub-regional bilateral free trade agreements. 


Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific, import, liberalization, protectionism, foreign direct investment, free trade, tariff protection, TPP, APEC forum, economic integration 


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For citation:
Potapov M. Economic Integration in the Asia-Pacific: In Search of Model. Mirovaya ekonomika i mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya, 2017, vol. 61, No 11, pp. 57-65.

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