The massive growth in trade between the major East Asian economies is not only a result of the need to reduce dependence on outside markets. It is also the logical and pragmatic consequence of economic development in each of these countries. As the economies in East Asia have reached different stages of development, they have become more complementary. Today, Japan is the biggest trading partner of China and vice versa. Recently, when Japanese prime minister Yoshihiko Noda and his trade and industry minister Yukio Edano visited India, the Japanese media compared the relevance of China and India. The gaps are enormous! Some 820 Japanese firms have set up business in India, while 22,300 Japanese companies have business bases in China. According to the latest Japanese trade statistics, by the end of last November, the accrued 2011 volume of bilateral trade between Japan and China reached over $310 billion, while at the same point of time, the bilateral trade volume between India and Japan stood at a modest $16 billion. Even this was a substantial improvement over former times.
Continue reading article: East Asia moves closer together (Financial Chronicle)