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Japan, Colombia To Speed Up FTA Talks

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

31 July 2014


Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have agreed to expedite the implementation of a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA).

After a meeting in Bogotá, Colombia, Santos announced that the delegations of both countries have been "instructed to speed up the negotiations." The two countries began talks on an FTA at the end of 2012. However, progress was hampered by disagreements over the tariff treatment of manufactured products.

For Colombia, the agreement would expand its network of free trade pacts in the Americas, which serve to liberalize trading conditions for Colombian exporters through a combination of lower tariffs and reduced bureaucracy. Colombia already has free trade agreements with the United States, Canada, and Mexico, and the Mercosur states Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

Japan, meanwhile, has FTAs in place with the Latin American countries Mexico, Peru, and Chile, as well as a number of Asian countries.

Japan's exports to Colombia in 2011, mainly of manufactured goods, were valued at USD1.44bn, while Colombia's exports to Japan, mainly of coffee and agricultural goods, were valued at USD528m.

TAGS: investment | free trade agreement (FTA) | Chile | Paraguay | Uruguay | Venezuela | tariffs | Colombia | Mexico | agreements | Brazil | Canada | Peru | United States | trade | Argentina | Japan

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