Amitendu Palit

Senior Research Fellow and Research Lead (trade and economics), Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore

Dr Amitendu Palit is Senior Research Fellow and Research Lead (Trade and Economics) at the Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore. He is an economist specialising in international trade and investment policies, FTAs, supply chains, connectivity, cross-border data flows and the Indian economy. He sits on the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Trade and Investment and is also a senior research fellow (honorary) at the Wong MNC Centre and an adviser for Athena Infonomics. Earlier, he worked for several years in the Ministry of Finance and other ministries in India. Amitendu has edited and authored several books including Seeking Middle Ground: Land, Markets and Public Policy (OUP, 2019; co-edited) and The Trans-Pacific Partnership, China and India: Economic and Political Implications (Routledge, 2014). In addition, he is a columnist for India’s Financial Express and a regular contributor to East-West Centre, East Asia Forum and China Daily. He also provides expert views for media outlets such as the BBC, Bloomberg News, CNA, CNBC, ABC, CGTN and Doordarshan (India).    

An electric-rickshaw transports passengers along a street in the old quarters of New Delhi on 15 September 2020. (Jewel Samad/AFP)

Hostile ties with China make it impossible for India to return to RCEP

Without India, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) stops short of being a regional construct for the Indo-Pacific, says ISAS academic Amitendu Palit. However, India is unlikely to reconsider its decision in the foreseeable future because of its worsening relations with China. While China has expressed its interest to be part of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), might India’s domestic concerns lead it to miss the boat once again, to its own detriment?