Peru seals FTA with Canada during World Economic Forum

Peru successfully concluded a free trade agreement with Canada on Saturday as both countries look to diversify their markets ahead of fears of a possible recession in the United States. Peru’s Foreign Trade and Tourism Minister, Mercedes Aráoz, sealed the deal with her Canadian counterpart, David Emerson, during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where they later made the announcement.

The agreement immediately eliminates tariffs on 97 percent of Peruvian exports to Canada, with the remaining tariffs to be shelved over three to seven years. The deal also eliminates tariffs on 94 percent of Canadian exports to Peru, with the rest to be lifted over a period of five to 10 years.

“It’s big news because it guarantees growth and Canadian investment in Peru,” said President Alan García on Saturday. “It guarantees that in 2008 we will have new room to grow, every time taking Peru’s name to better geographic places and economies around the world.”

Bilateral trade between the two countries totaled almost $2.4 billion in 2006, with the balance of trade favoring Peru. Canada is also among Peru’s largest foreign investors, with investment reaching about $2.9 billion in 2006, much of it in mining.

Minister Araoz told Radio Programas radio the free trade agreement will favor Peru’s small and medium-sized companies, complementing the U.S.–Peru FTA which was ratified by President George W. Bush on Dec. 12, 2007.

“Canada has given our small and medium exporters privileged access, more than any other agreement that they’ve signed before,” said Ms Araoz. “Besides that, Canada has committed to provide training to small and medium companies so they have knowledge on how to sell to their government.”

Peru’s principal exports to Canada are gold, copper, asparagus and fishmeal, while its major imports are cereals, machinery, electrical equipment, leguminous vegetables and paper.

Peru is also currently negotiating a free trade deal with China, with the second round of talks scheduled for March. It is also considering beginning negotiations with South Korea, Singapore, and Japan.

Sharing is caring!

Tags: ,

Comments are closed.