China keen to join Digital Economy Partnership Agreement


DETROIT, United States — China is keen to join the Digital Economy Partnership Agreement (DEPA), Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao said on Friday.

Wang made the remarks at the ministerial meeting between China and DEPA members on the sidelines of the 2023 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting in Detroit, the United States.

Active efforts need to be made, as Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed, to facilitate China’s accession to the DEPA, so does guidance given for China’s relevant work, Wang said.

Since China set up a working group, the Chinese side and DEPA members have worked effectively and made positive progress in this regard, Wang said.

China stands ready to make joint efforts with DEPA members to step up technical consultations, actively carry out policy exchanges, properly handle each other’s concerns, and continue to promote practical cooperation in digital economy, said the minister.

DEPA members spoke positively of the progress China’s working group has made, and expressed their willingness to work with the Chinese side to comprehensively promote consultations at all levels, and deepen relevant cooperation in digital economy, so as to continuously achieve positive results.

On Nov 1, 2021, China filed a formal application to join the DEPA. It later conducted several rounds of talks with DEPA members, in which it expounded on China’s laws, regulations as well as regulatory practices in digital economy, and actively demonstrated its willingness to cooperate under the DEPA.

On Aug 18, 2022, China set up a working group to advance talks on joining the DEPA, and launched negotiations on its accession to the agreement.

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