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World's biggest trade deal RCEP to take effect Jan. 1

Asia-focused pact covers 30% of global population and GDP

RCEP comes into force 60 days after six of 10 ASEAN nations and three of five other countries submit depositions to ASEAN, which is serving as the wider bloc's secretariat.   © Reuters

SYDNEY/TOKYO/BEIJING -- The world's biggest free trade agreement is set to take effect on Jan. 1, slashing tariffs for countries including Japan, China and members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

New Zealand Trade Minister Phil Twyford on Wednesday said his country had completed ratification of the the 15-nation Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, following Australia.

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