Harry G. Broadman, in his recent Forbes article opined that the RCEP’s birth is oversold as the world’s largest new free-trade area.
While it certainly sends an uplifting signal in the midst of an otherwise deeply gloomy global economic period as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to constrain world trade flows and the functioning of markets, businesses, workers and consumers, we should not lose sight of the fact that even if the RCEP becomes effective—which depends on ratification by at least the 9 of the 15 signatory countries required—many of the agreement’s provisions are akin to ‘new wine in old bottles. And some of that wine does not have much alcoholic content. Or it may even not be wine at all.
The most straightforward way to think of RCEP is that integrates existing free-trade agreements between the 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) states—Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam—while bringing in 5 other countries: China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.
RCEP has been billed as creating the “newest and largest free-trade area” in history. This claim is over-stretching the truth. In two dimensions.
Read the rest of the article here.
For thirty-six years, Harry G. Broadman has been an expert practitioner in international finance, investment and trade, business growth, risk-mitigation, innovation strategy, and corporate governance reform. One of the earliest serial entrepreneurs, he’s re-invented himself more than a handful of times not only in an interdisciplinary fashion but also across greatly differentiated senior roles in the private sector, interspersed with stints as a high-level policy maker.
Broadman has emerged as a genuine thought-leader on the unforeseen dynamics that have changed the underlying structure and character of world markets—long before the term “globalization” was commonplace. These insights shaped his career focus on structuring cross-border transactions, especially in high-growth emerging markets, the parts of the world toward which Harry has always had a strong predisposition. Illustrative of this, he’s worked on-the-ground with businesses large and small in more than 65 such countries across 5 continents. He’s a driving force advising, creating, and establishing highly-successful enterprises positioned at the leading edge of their markets.
Broadman is currently CEO and Managing Partner of Proa Global Partners LLC, a global investment transaction strategy firm and on the Johns Hopkins University faculty. His past positions include:
- Senior Managing Director and Chief Economist at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)
- Managing Director at Albright Capital Management (Investment Committee)
- senior official at the World Bank
- Chief of Staff of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers in the White House
- United States Assistant Trade Representative
- faculty member at Harvard University
- fellow at the Brookings Institution
Harry’s insights on business, innovation, political risks and economic trends are also featured in several publications. He is a monthly columnist for Forbes, Newsweek International and Gulf News. He has also authored several books and numerous professional articles published in a wide array of peer-reviewed economics, law, and foreign policy journals. His most recent books are the World Bank’s best-selling; Africa’s Silk Road: China and India’s New Economic Frontier; From Disintegration to Reintegration: Russia and the Former Soviet Union in the Global Economy; and The State As Shareholder: China’s Management of Enterprise Assets.
Harry G. Broadman received an A.B. in economics and history, magna cum laude, from Brown University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and an A.M. and Ph.D. in economics from the University of Michigan. He is a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a member of The Bretton Woods Committee, and is a non-executive Director on several boards.
Harry’s speaking topics include:
- Just Where Is The Growth in the Global Economy?
- Will China’s ‘One-Belt, One Road’, Become ‘A Bridge to Nowhere’?
- Trump’s ‘Threatenomics’ Targets Mexico
- Is This Globalization 2.0; or 3.0?
- Infrastructure May Not Be Sexy, But Bring Sexy Back
- India Is The Tortoise To China’s Hare
- Brexit Is The UK’s Gift To A Revitalized EU
- Africa Is Becoming Silicon Valley 2.0
- Will Putin Succeed in Recreating the Soviet Empire?
- Do Corporate Social Responsibility Programs Actually Pay Off?