How is CEPA/CECA different from FTA?
A Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) or Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) is different from a traditional (FTA) Free Trade Agreement in two ways.
Firstly, CEPA or CECA are more comprehensive and ambitious than an FTA in terms of coverage of areas and the type of commitments. While a traditional Free Trade Agreement focuses mainly on goods; a CECA/CEPA is more ambitious in terms of a holistic coverage of many areas like services, investment, competition, government procurement, disputes etc.
Secondly, CEPA/CECA looks deeper at the regulatory aspects of trade than a Free Trade Agreement. It is on account of this that it encompasses mutual recognition agreements that cover the regulatory regimes of the partners. An MRA recognises different regulatory regimes of partners on the presumption that they achieve the same objectives.