CWR > Volume 1(2); 2015 > Articles
Research Paper
Published online: September 1, 2015

The ASEAN-China Free Trade Area: Neighbors, Relatives or Foes?

Jingjia Ke
Guangdong University of Finance and Economics
Room 2301, No.408 Jie Fang Zhong Lu, Guangzhou, China
Corresponding Author:

ⓒ Copyright YIJUN Institute of International Law. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Framework Agreement for the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area was initiated in 2002. It is the first ASEAN Plus pattern free trade agreement in East Asia. To understand the cultural and historical bonds between China and Southeast Asian States, and contemporary Chinese regional political economy in building the ACFTA, this paper reviews the tributary trade and ancient Chinese diplomacy between China and the neighboring States. The primary purpose of this research is to show how the ACFTA is in the interests of all parties in the course of China's fast economic and political growth. The following article highlights the ACFTA provisions by examining trading agreements in goods, services and investment in the context of the corresponding WTO provisions. In the end, it suggests the possible resolutions for achieving a win-win and interdependent ASEAN-China Free Trade Area.

Keywords : ACFTA, ASEAN-China, Tributary Trade, Early Harvest Program, Agreement on Trade in Goods, Agreement on Trade in Services, Agreement on Trade in Investment

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