Global Zero Tariff in Pacific Alliance

The Panamanian business sector believes that this could affect sensitive sectors such as agriculture and industrial production, if the nation joins the group.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Manuel Ferreira, chief economist of the Chamber of Commerce, said that caution should be exercised in this regard "especially as we had a hard time safeguarding these sensitivities in treaties with Colombia, Chile and Peru, which are members of the Alliance, and now the possibility arising of opening all sectors is of great concern. "

According to Ferreira, the subject is being monitored and some positive aspects have been reviewed such as being able to have commercial offices together in other markets such as Asia and other actions which as an economic bloc could benefit the country.

Cristina Thayer, member of the firm Galindo, Arias and Lopez, said the countries of the Pacific Alliance have very different production structures to Panama and that could mean less competitive advantages which would negatively affect sensitive sectors. "We hope the government handles the issue very carefully because the consequences for the productive sector could be very negative," he said.

Alexis Pineda, head of trade negotiations, said that beyond concern over the total market opening, there are issues related to compliance with health standards and rules of origin, which, at the end of the day, can make all the difference.

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