South Korea, Canada wrap up free-trade deal

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South Korea and Canada concluded a free-trade agreement Tuesday, wrapping up a negotiating process that began nine years ago and focused on barriers in the auto and agriculture sectors.

The South’s trade ministry said the FTA would be signed as early as June after legal reviews by both sides.

Talks between the two countries began in 2005 but suffered a five-year hiatus as Canada took South Korean restrictions on beef imports to a World Trade Organisation panel in 2009.

The trade ministry said South Korea’s auto industry would be the greatest beneficiary of the deal, which is the first FTA Canada has signed with an Asian country.

Canada is the world’s fifth-largest market for South Korean cars. Last year, South Korea shipped US$2.23 billion worth of vehicles to Canada and imported US$92 million worth of Canadian cars and parts.

South Korea agreed to completely remove its 8.0 per cent import tariff on Canadian cars and parts after the FTA takes effect.

Canada will reduce 6.1 per cent tariffs on South Korean cars and parts to four per cent within 24 months.

Canada will also remove most of its import tariffs on clothing and textile products, which now stand at a maximum of 18 per cent, within two years.

The two countries will completely remove tariffs on 97.5 per cent of products within 10 years from the day of implementation.

However, 19 per cent of farm products including rice, cheese and dry milk will be either exempt from the deal or receive a grace period of more than 10 years, higher than the deals South Korea has already forged with the United States and the European Union.

South Korea regards rice and beef as the most sensitive items.

Source : Channel News Asia | March 11, 2014

About thomasdinnocenzi

Thomas D'Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused senior international executive with extensive experience in global sourcing and market development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global sourcing operations worldwide. Extensive experience in international market development operations to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, benchmarking performance, and restricting organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. As principal of Nova Advisors, LLC I’ve assembled an exemplary team that brings with them the knowledge and experience gained from starting up a Global Sourcing program with multiple Fortune 500 companies as well as the largest supplier network throughout the Asia-Pacific region. We have experience and expertise in more than a thousand medical and pharmaceutical products in manufacturing and sourcing at the best value. The right product, the right price point and the right branding fueled these successes that resulted in double-digit growth for top line sales and bottom line net margins for our customers. What sets us apart: • Our reach includes a large network of suppliers & manufacturers spanning 13 countries in Asia-Pacific region • We understand the manufacturing process and the business of the supplier and the buyer • Our company culture is based on quality assurance and our process is based on local quality control Our commitment is to be your partner offering the best products and services at the lowest cost. Contact me to discuss how we can make the global marketplace work for you. In addition, I am open to discussing opportunities in global sourcing, international marketing & sales, logistics and medical/pharma in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines & Japan. Aside from my work I enjoy piano, astronomy, physics, and assisting my daughters with their studies. SPECIALTIES: Global Sourcing, Supply Chain Management, Business Development, Marketing, Logistics, Global Networking, Market Development, Healthcare Solutions, Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, Technology, Asia, Southeast Asia, US and Canada
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