To the extent that atRAs go beyond WTO commitments and remain open to further participation by countries committed to their standards, they can complement the multilateral trading system. Over the years, the OECD has examined the relationship between regional trade agreements and the multilateral trading system, including specific policy areas addressed by ATRs, such as agricultural addressing, technical regulations, compliance standards and procedures, investment rules on international technology transfer, integration of environmental considerations and approaches to market opening in the digital age – to name a few. I am determined to extend our cooperation with aSEAN and to develop our own views on how the EU should involve the entire Indo-Pacific region. As elsewhere, the key question is what the regional order will be. As I said, the agreed rules make states safe, people free and businesses ready to invest. Regional trade agreements depend on the level of commitment and agreement between member states. Member States benefit from trade agreements, including increased employment opportunities, lower unemployment rates and increased market opportunities. Since trade agreements generally come with investment guarantees, investors who wish to invest in developing countries are protected from political risks. A regional trade agreement (RTA) is a treaty between two or more governments that sets the trade rules for all signatories. Examples of regional trade agreements include the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central American-Dominican Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), the European Union (EU) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). C. Regional economic integration is good for consumers because it lowers prices.
E. The movement towards regional economic integration has been most successful in Asia. At the same time, we need to go further. With ASEAN, we have great ambitions to expand our engagement, from trade to connectivity, from digital transformation to the joint effort to promote regional and global security. We hope to be able to quickly bring our cooperation back to the level of a strategic partnership. In the face of all that is happening in the world, we see ASEAN as a natural partner and advocate of the same ideas of regional integration and multilateralism. B. Members of the World Trade Organization are not required to inform the Organization of the regional trade agreements in which they participate. Member States of a Customs UnionA customs union is an agreement between two or more neighbouring countries for the removal of trade barriers, the abolition or abolition of tariffs and the abolition of quotas. These unions have been defined in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and are the third stage of economic integration. The Committee on Economic Relations and the Policy of Economic Union and the Policy of Economic Union and Eastern Europe, given the many security crises in our neighbourhood, I must inevitably focus on the events that have taken place near our borders. However, I am convinced that the Asia-Pacific region is our economic neighbourhood.
That is why we have an interest in the evolution of the region. Nevertheless, as the EU, we must be very attentive and aware of the strategic challenges: the Indo-Pacific region is of strategic importance to us. We must strengthen our commitment to ensure that our voice is heard and that the overall architecture of regional cooperation remains open and rules-based. In collaboration with partners such as the WTO and the OECD, the World Bank Group provides information and support to countries wishing to sign or deepen regional trade agreements.