Guatemala-Canada TLC is Stalled

Fifteen years after the first approach was made, the countries have not reached an agreement on the conditions of entry of products such as textiles, meat and sugar.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Since 2001, Guatemala and Canada have been trying to close negotiations to create a free trade area between the two markets. Besides pending negotiations related to phytosanitary issues, labor and environment, the definition of the terms of trade of products such as sugar, textiles, beef and pork has still not been made concrete, and there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

"... The negotiators have to be careful, because the pig and poultry markets are very sensitive. The industry is subject to multiple and complex health security measures and, therefore, requires a lot of investment. And this must be respected "said Javier Zepeda, executive director of the Chamber of Industry of Guatemala (CIG) to

Read: Guatemala Wants FTA with Canada

"... While the signing of a treaty is delayed, about 700 domestic producers gain time to reduce costs and introduce technology in hatcheries. The impasse is detrimental to both countries. Fanny de Estrada, director of the Guatemalan Exporters Association (AGEXPORT) is confident that the FTA with Canada will benefit the country. "

Read: Canada Wants FTA with CA-4 Group

Nikki Bahr, president of the Guatemalan Chamber of Commerce-Canadian (Cancham) predicted that the FTA could be signed before the end of the year, although neither the Canadian government nor the administration of President Jimmy Morales have spoken out on the subject.

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The government plans to resume talks with Canada, which had been suspended because of differences over issues related to textiles and agriculture.

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The Honduran government has reported that the agreement will take effect on October 1, and that it will be coordinating a visit by a group of Canadian companies in the country in the coming previous.

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Honduras has concluded the negotiation of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Canada, as announced by Secretary of Commerce.

Sensitive issues for Canada like the inclusion of the pork and the beef cuts have been resolved.

"According to the report from the Secretary of Industry and Commerce (SIC), Francisco Zelaya, this treaty will open the market for exports of traditional and non traditional products.

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