The Australian Prime Minister held talks with Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha before the start of the G20 summit in Osaka and the two leaders shared common concern about the impact of the trade war between the US and China.
Prayut attends the G20 meeting as Chairman of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAn). Thailand promised for the conclusion of the RCEP by the end of this year during the ASEAN summit last weekend.
Australia, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea (RoK), India and New Zealand are the non-ASEAN members in the RCEP.
Negotiations began in 2012 and were supposed to have been concluded in late 2015, but they have been bogged down repeatedly amid disputes over protected sectors and market access, mainly between India and China.