Although the United States is eligible to apply to join the RCEP, it’s not clear that it would anytime soon.
Biden has said he would prioritize first strengthening American worker competitiveness and infrastructure before considering entering trade deals.
The new agreement will be the first multilateral trade deal that includes China, South Korea and Japan, and it will incentivize companies to source parts from other countries within the trade zone.
A simulation by the Peterson Institute for International Economics this year found that the two new Asian trade deals would raise trade among members by $428 billion and global GDP by $186 billion by 2030.
“By lowering East Asian trade costs, RCEP will accelerate the decoupling of the East Asian and U.S. economies, arguably the most productive regional partnership in economic history,” wrote Peter Petri and Michael Plummer.