The executive president of the Costa Rica Coffee Institute (ICAFE), Ronald Peters, said to the La Prensa Libre" daily that Costa Rica and the rest of Central America will continue to advocate for the adoption of a strict rule of origin in order to prevent Europe from importing coffee from other places in the world and that would make Central America tariff-free.
The Costa Rican Congress has finally approved the Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union, which will take effect on August 1.
From a press release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Trade of Costa Rica (COMEX):
The Legislature has approved on its second reading the Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union (CAAA), which seeks to boost trade relations between Central America and the old continent, by improving the business climate, creating new opportunities for trade, investment and employment and strengthening institutions in the region.
The AACUE now must be approved by the legislatures of the countries involved.
A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Trade in Costa Rica (COMEX) reads:
Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union ready for signing
San Jose, June 25, 2012. Today the Council of Ministers of the European Union authorized the signing of the Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union (EU-CAAA) on Friday June 29 in Honduras. The Ministers of Foreign Trade and the Foreign Ministers of the region will sign the document, along with the Trade Commissioner of the European Union and the Danish Foreign Minister, in a formal ceremony under the framework of the Summit of Heads of State and Government of member countries of the System for Central American Integration (SICA).
The countries of Central America already made an offer of 90% of the tariff items that they will allow the European Union.
According to the Guatemalan vice minister of Foreign Trade, Ruben Morales, the negotiating teams from the region agreed to the 90% of the items as required by the EU at a private meeting that was held for one week in Guatemala.
This was the official posture of a delegation from the European Parliament, in a visit to Costa Rica.
Marco Vinicio Ruiz, Costa Rican Commerce Minister, explained the stance of the Europeans, who want to wait for the Honduran elections to resume negotiations after them.
"If this electoral process is carried out in a reasonable manner, with international supervision, and many governments endorse them, it is likely that negotiations will be resumed immediately after them", stated the minister.
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