logo logo

Bachelet signs China-Chile free-trade agreement


Bachelet Signs China-Chile Free-Trade Agreement

By Matthew Walter, Santiago

21 August 2006

Aug. 21 (Bloomberg) — Chilean President Michelle Bachelet signed a free-trade agreement with China to increase sales of copper, fruit and fish oil to Asia’s second-biggest economy.

Trade between China and Chile, the world’s biggest copper producer, increased to $6.99 billion in 2005, making China the Andean country’s second-biggest trading partner behind the U.S., the Chilean government said today in a statement on its Web site. China is the world’s largest user of copper.

``After the agreement with the United States and with the European Union, this agreement is the one that will have the greatest impact,’’ Finance Minister Andres Velasco said today in Santiago.

This is China’s first trade agreement outside of Asia, and may help turn Chile into a platform for Chinese investment in Latin America, Foreign Minister Alejandro Foxley said today in Santiago. He’ll travel to Lima tomorrow to sign another free- trade agreement with Peru, he said.