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After eight years of unremitting efforts, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement was formally signed on Nov 15. The agreement involves the 10 member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and five of its major trading partners－Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea. The total population and GDP of the 15 member economies account for 30 percent and 29 percent of the world total respectively. But since China has already signed bilateral free agreements with 17 economies, including with ASEAN, Australia and the ROK, why is the RCEP still so important to it?
The average South Korean is not keen for reunification
Unification is necessary: 38.9 percent of 20-29 year-olds vs. 71.0 percent of 60+ year-olds
Positive attitude to a one-nation state: 20.9 percent of 20-29 year-olds vs. 47.3 percent of 60+ year-olds
Negative attitude to a one-nation state: 47.2 percent of 20-29 year-olds vs. 26.6 percent of 60+ year-olds
It’s not only the younger generation that holds this view. Overall public support for reunification has steadily declined in the South Korea, where 57.8 percent see it as necessary, down from 69.3 percent in 2014, according to a survey published last year by the Korea Institute for National Unification, which is funded by the South Korean government. But among young people, many of whom aren’t swayed by appeals to ethnic heritage, the number is far lower. According to the survey, only 38.9 percent of those in their 20s say reunification is necessary.