Tax-News.com | 13 November 2014
Colombian Senate endorses FTA with Costa Rica
by Mike Godfrey, Washington
The Colombian Senate has approved a free trade agreement (FTA) with Costa Rica on second reading.
Under the treaty, Costa Rica will immediately eliminate tariffs on 74 percent of industrial products from Colombia – the bulk of trade flows. Tariff cuts on a further 24 percent of products will be phased over a period of up to 15 years. The remaining two percent will be removed if Colombia succeeds in its attempts to join the Pacific Alliance.
The products that benefit from immediate relief include fertilizers, paints, some clothing and textiles, pharmaceuticals, automobiles, automobile parts, and toys. Products that will gradually be made tariff-free include agro-chemicals, cosmetics, appliances, footwear, wood products, paper, furniture, and paint.
Bilateral trade between the two countries reached USD394.2m last year, up from USD239.4m ten years earlier, according to Costa Rica’s Ministry of Foreign Trade.
Costa Rica aims to become a full member of the Pacific Alliance. As a prerequisite of joining the trade bloc it needs to ink FTAs with each of its members – Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru.