Panamanian close to negotiations with the European Union

Panama is again showing signs of interest in taking part actively in negotiations between Central America and the European Union with the goal of signing an agreement of association.

Monday, May 5, 2008

The National Foreign Relations Board, in which the private sector participates, had on its agenda the association agreement and the implications of an economic integration of Central America as a prerequisite for taking part.
Leroy Sheffer, chief negociator for Panama, said the last round of negotiations focused on arriving at an agreement that recognizes that the differences in size and development of the respective economies makes special treatment for the region a vitally important issue.
At this stage, Panama has only an observer status at the meetings.

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More on this topic

Panama Enters EU Negotiation

March 2010

The European Union formally accepted the inclusion of Panama in the negotiations for an Association Agreement with Central America.

This way, EU recognizes Panama as part of the Central American block, despite the fact that it is not a member of the Central American Economic Integration Secretary (SIECA).

EU Agreement to Include Honduras and Panama

January 2010

Benita Ferrero-Waldner, EU's Trade commissar, said she is pleased with the inclusion of Panama in the agreement.

The involved parties hope to sign the Agreement on May 18th, in Madrid, Spain.

"Marco Ruiz, Costa Rica Commerce Minister, said that 'we support the inclusion of Panama, they have been taking part in the meetings.

Panama to Enter Agreement with EU

May 2009

The European Union would allow Panama to enter into the Agreement by lifting the prerequisite that it should be part of SIECA.

Panama has been an observer thus far in the negotiation for an Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union because the country had not fulfilled the European Union’s prerequisite of signing the protocol for the "economic integration with Central America, i.e.

European Union hints at sweet deal on trade

April 2008

The European Union might be willing to apply trade concessions to Central America under the enhanced Generalized System of Preferences (GSP-Plus), giving the region the equivalent of most-favored nation status. The possibility arose during talks between the two blocs.

Rupert Schlegelmilch, the EU's chief trade negotiator, told reporters that he well understood Central America's wish to apply GSP-Plus, which is designed for the world's most vulnerable nations.

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