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In a new effort to strengthen economic cooperation in the region while keeping China in check, U.S. President Joe Biden launched the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity on Monday in Tokyo, with 12 other countries including Japan joining the initiative.

The IPEF is an attempt by the U.S. to reassert its economic leadership in the region after it withdrew from a major Asia-Pacific trade pact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, in 2017 under then-President Donald Trump. But the IPEF faces tough questions over just how effective it will be in practice.

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