With the free-trade agreement between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in effect, businesses in the smaller countries are worried about a possible influx of inexpensive Chinese goods. Robert Sutter of Georgetown University found that ASEAN's trade deficit with China is matched by a trade surplus with the U.S., indicating that trade between China and ASEAN might simply be part of the global supply chain that exports to the U.S. and other Western markets.

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