Not fearing free trade, lowering tariffs and facilitating business development are some of the ingredients the Chilean export model that Central America could follow.
In an interview with Elfinancierocr.com, ProChile's director, Roberto Paiva, explained that one of the main reasons behind the success of his country's foreign trade model is the high degree of trade liberalization.Not only for having reduced tariffs, but also for"... 'having negotiated trade agreements. We have agreements with Europe and much of Asia. We don't yet have Africa.This opening not only lowers tariffs but brings us closer to the market and the business'. "
The Ministry of Finance in Costa Rica has questioned the legality of the triangulated invoicing of goods imported under free trade agreements.
A threat to the legal security of the country is how the business sector describes the questioning on the part of the Ministry of Finance on the procedure used by many companies to invoice in a triangulated manner goods imported under existing trade agreements.The Treasury's concern is that companies can "inflate" the value when triangulating and leave a portion of revenues outside of the country.
After two years of government, the Solis administration remains indecisive and has still not resolved this vital issue, which even though it is opposed by several productive sectors of the country, needs urgent resolution.
The country's entry into the commercial alliance composed of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru would represent a very significant change for the economy of Costa Rica, a change that sectors producing goods and services would have to integrate into their strategic plans, which is why they need clear signals regarding the direction to be taken.
The vagueness of the Solis administration regarding the integration of Costa Rica into the Pacific Alliance has provoked negative reactions from business associations.
The country's entry into the Commercial alliance composed of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru would represent a very important change for the economy of Costa Rica, a change that sectors producing goods and services would have to integrate into their strategic plans, which is why they need clear signals regarding what will happen.
Three years after being signed, the Colombian Constitutional Court has approved the bilateral agreement that liberalizes 75% of industrial products over terms of 5 to 15 years.
This was the last institutional step needed to for the FTA between Costa Rica and Colombia, as the Central American country had completed all the necessary procedures, leaving only formal communication from Colombia to Costa Rica remaining, so that the agreement will go into force 60 days later.
They argue that joining the bloc offers growth potential for commercial partners who to date represent only 4% of total exports.
Enrique Egloff, president of the Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica provided support for this with figures which show that in 2015 Costa Rica's exports to the countries in the Pacific Alliance totaled $377 million and imports $1.786 billion. These amounts accounted for 4% of total exports and 12% of total imports. Of those exports, 97% are industrial goods, and for imports 95% are.
The basis for the agreement have been established, with Panama having achieved immediate preferential access for various agricultural and fisheries products, and access through quotas for beef, pineapple, papaya and tropical fruits.
After four rounds of negotiations between teams from each government, a basic document was created setting out the conditions of entry of products and services to each market.
Honey, flowers, coffee, textiles and tropical fruit are among the products that can take advantage of the tariff conditions of the trade agreement with Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland.
The free trade agreement with EFTA, comprising Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland opens the doors to four countries with high purchasing power and complementary conditions in Guatemala in the production and marketing of certain products.
Central American governments have now signed the General Framework agreement with China so that negotiations can start in October.
From a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Trade in Guatemala:
Guatemala, July 31, 2015. Central America is prepared to negotiate as a bloc, a Free Trade Agreement with South Korea. Therefore, the deputy ministers in charge of foreign trade and trade negotiations in the region met yesterday in San Salvador, and agreed to and signed the General Framework for this negotiation.
The government has filed a request for entry as an observer to CARICOM and has proposed to the Caribbean block the start of negotiations for a free trade agreement.
The negotiation of a trade agreement with the bloc would increase the exchange of agricultural and manufactured goods, and improve the position of Panama as a logistics hub and tourist destination among the Caribbean countries.