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International relations

Five RCEP takeaways: Asia cements grip as free trade torchbearer

US now finds itself on outside of two massive Asia-Pacific blocs

From left, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Trade Minister Tran Tuan Anh wave to their counterparts at the virtual RCEP signing ceremony during the 37th ASEAN Summit in Hanoi on Nov. 15.   © VNA/Kyodo

SINGAPORE -- The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement signed by 15 countries on Sunday positions Asia as the world's torchbearer for free trade.

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