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South Korea, Canada Agree To Further Talks On FTA

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

09 December 2009


Recent meetings between South Korea’s President, Lee Myung-bak, and the Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, have concluded that further efforts should be made to negotiate the free trade agreement (FTA) between the two countries.

Canada and South Korea launched negotiations on a bilateral FTA in July 2005, following both internal consultations in Canada with interested businesses, and also rounds of exploratory discussions between officials from both countries, in which the possible benefits in trade and other areas were recognized.

Within the ambit of a future FTA agreement, discussions had been taking place on a wide range of issues, including on trade in goods, rules of origin, customs procedures, non-tariff measures, cross-border services, investment, competition, intellectual property and dispute settlement.

However, the last round (the thirteenth) of negotiations on the FTA was held as far back as March 2008, and further dialogue has been held up over a number of issues, including South Korea's protracted ban on Canadian beef imports.

The two sides were said to still be too far apart for an agreement between the two leaders at their latest meeting, but they did agree to use all resources within their power to re-start the process.


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