Santiago Times, Chile
Chile signs free trade agreement with Hong Kong
7 September 2012
By Emily Green
Piñera negotiates, seeks out FTAs with other members of APEC.
President Sebastián Piñera signed a free trade agreement with Hong Kong on Friday at the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit. Piñera also concluded free trade negotiations with Thailand, an agreement he hopes to implement “as soon as possible.” Piñera intends to begin negotiations for an FTA with Indonesia this weekend while also considering the possibility of FTAs with other members of APEC.
The president stated that the agreement with Hong Kong fulfills the interests of both countries and allows the two growing economies to “delve into one another.”
“An economy as innovative and technologically advanced as that of Hong Kong joins forces with an economy like Chile’s, which is also innovative and is growing to make Chile a developing country without poverty,” Piñera said.
With a population of more than 7 million and a higher standard of living, Hong Kong is of great interest for Chilean exporters. Hong Kong has a GDP of nearly US$50,000 per capita and is consistently ranked as one of the most open, competitive and business-friendly economies in the world.
With the addition of this agreement, Chile now has 60 FTAs with various countries and regions, making it one of the most open economies in the world.