"Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership" (RCEP) signed after almost 10 years of negotiations
On November 15, 2020, the RCEP free trade agreement, in a video conference, was signed by all 15 participating countries.
In addition to the 10 ASEAN countries Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, which have already concluded free trade agreements between themselves. Are also involved countries China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.
Thus, the agreement consists of quite diverse countries - rich and poor, large and small, highly developed and those where industrialization is just beginning.
Therefore, in the 31 rounds of negotiations - contrary to the name - a not very comprehensive agreement was worked out in order not to structurally disadvantage less developed and smaller economies.
In order to enter China at present, a self-employed person needs a valid M visa. This visa is valid in most cases 180 days and is issued primarily to entrepreneurs who want to pursue economic or commercial activities. Such as visiting clients, factories or trade fairs.
It is also possible to enter most provinces with a Z-VISA. These are issued to employees and are valid for 30 days. Within these 30 days, the worker must apply for a work and residence permit, which is usually a formality. This permit must be valid for at least 90 days and can be valid for a maximum of 5 years.
Hong Kong's Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) pension scheme turns 20
In the 1990s, as financial security in old age became an ever-greater problem due to the increasing number of older people, a falling birth rate and the disintegration of extended families into nuclear families, the British government planned a mandatory pension scheme from 1993.
This was finally introduced on December 1, 2000, and since then has been the only compulsory social insurance in Hong Kong.
In mid-2020 a total of HKD 1 trillion (approx. 107 billion euros) in assets was managed for Hong Kong citizens.
In order to sell products commercially on the Chinese market, many products require mandatory CCC certification.
The requirement and the certification itself are comparable with the CE marking in the European Economic Area (EEA), both certifications indicate that the product fulfills all health and safety requirements.
When the state of Singapore was expelled from the Malaysian Federation in 1965, the former English crown colony was confronted with major problems such as mass unemployment, shortage of housing, arable land and raw materials. It is mainly thanks to the Dutch economist Albert Winsemius, who in cooperation with the state government, brought about Singapore's steep economic rise.
Today, Singapore is one of Asia's most important financial centers and trans-shipment centers for goods, as well as a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). As a country with a decidedly liberal economic policy, excellent infrastructure and low taxes, it attracts many foreign investments and a skilled workforce, which further drives the innovative and dynamic economy.
ASEAN series: Philippines
The Philippine economy shows a clear disparity: a modern electronics industry and a booming service sector on the one hand, and poverty and subsistence agriculture on the other. In addition, there is a developmental inequality between Greater Manila ("National Capital Region" / NCR), which in many places reflects the level of development of an emerging country, and the economically more backward provinces and remote islands.
ASEAN Series: Malaysia
The budget for 2021, approved by the Malaysian government on November 1, provides, like the previous ones, for many tax incentives and the provision of monetary grants to companies. Malaysia's goal is to attract more foreign investors in manufacturing, high technology and high value-added industries.
As a result of the trade war between the USA and China, which has been ongoing since the beginning of 2018, rising production costs, a volatile money market and long-standing economic restrictions, more and more companies are deciding to relocate all or part of their production to southwest Asia - to the ASEAN region.
In our series of possible alternative locations for diversified Asian business, we present different countries and their different approaches to offer a range of incentive packages designed to attract companies affected by the trade war between the US and China. On a weekly basis, we consolidate the development of the incentives of the individual countries and discuss them briefly. The developments show how the ASEAN members differ and what opportunities are available to investors seeking locations elsewhere in Asia.
ASEAN News: Recovery outlook for Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore
The global pandemic is currently still ongoing. In Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore in the ASEAN region, however, the number of cases is already declining. This allows the possibility for an economic outlook.
Hong Kong News: Measures to support individuals and businesses affected by COVID-19
The Hong Kong government has put together a massive aid package to cushion the impact of the crisis on businesses and individuals. A core element is the support of salary payments from companies to retain jobs.
In Hong Kong, as in many other parts of the region, the COVID-19 pandemic is slowing down. This provides the opportunity to address the economic consequences .
Due to the economic impact of the global shutdown, the Hong Kong government has taken measures to stabilize the economic situation and established a Pandemic Response Fund to mitigate the negative effects of the corona crisis.
China News: How COVID-19 affected global supply chains
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the business world in an unprecedented scale and speed. It has caused the closures of business, the stoppage of factory outputs, and the disruption to global manufacturing industries and their supply networks.