Biden’s new Indo-Pacific economic framework for prosperity seeks to create a level playing field and facilitate peace

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Monday in Tokyo, President Joe Biden announced the launch of the new Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF), a trade framework involving 13 countries that want economic opportunities outside the usually scarce trade agreements with China.

“We share the commitment to a free, open, equitable, inclusive, interconnected, resilient, secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific region that has the potential to achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth,” said a joint statement by IPEF leaders. . “We recognize that our economic policy interests in the region are intertwined and deepening economic engagement between partners is critical to continued growth, peace and prosperity.”

President Joe Biden meets Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at Akasaka Palace on Monday, May 23, 2022 in Tokyo.
(Photo AP / Evan Vucci)

The new economic deal includes Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of KoreaMalaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States

“In order to prepare our economies for the future, we are initiating the process of establishing the Indo-Pacific economic framework for prosperity,” the statement added. “This framework is intended to promote resilience, sustainability, inclusiveness, economic growth, equity and competitiveness for our economies.”

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“Through this initiative, we aim to contribute to cooperation, stability, prosperity, development and peace within the region,” the leaders also said.

Together, the countries make up over 40% of world GDP, and Biden said regional unification under the new IPEF creates an environment in which these countries can freely decide the rules to allow for a level playing field in economic commitment and trade.

United States President Joe Biden, front left, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, front right, listen to the national anthem at Akasaka Palace State Guest House in Tokyo, Japan on Monday, May 23, 2022.

United States President Joe Biden, front left, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, front right, listen to the national anthem at Akasaka Palace State Guest House in Tokyo, Japan on Monday, May 23, 2022.
(Photo AP / Eugene Hoshiko, Pool)

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Biden also said the deal benefits American workers and American businesses, while also giving small businesses and ranchers a chance to compete as it is expected to reduce shipping costs and protect against shipping disruptions, which has resulted in higher costs for consumers.

The new agreement comes as the The United States has invested over $ 969 billion in the region in 2020, a figure that has nearly doubled over the past decade.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito, right, greets US President Joe Biden before their meeting at the Tokyo Imperial Palace on Monday, May 23, 2022.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito, right, greets US President Joe Biden before their meeting at the Tokyo Imperial Palace on Monday, May 23, 2022.
(Saul Loeb / Pool photo via AP)

The Indo-Pacific region also supports more than three million American jobs with nearly $ 900 billion invested in the United States.

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“We look forward to jointly creating supportive environments to increase the flows of trade, trade and investment between our economies and to improve standards and access to opportunities for our workers, companies and people in our combined markets,” concluded the leaders of the IPEF.

The IPEF framework consists of four key principles for unify economies among its partners: a wide variety of business issues, improving “transparency, diversity, security and sustainability in our supply chains”, privacy provisions to protect against money laundering or bribery regimes and strong working standards and environmental, including decarbonisation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.