Bernama | June 27, 2012
Peru-EU FTA likely to take effect year-end
LIMA, June 27 — The European Union Tuesday signed a multipartite free trade agreement (FTA) with Peru and Colombia which is expected to become effective before the end of this year, according to EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht.
Peruvian Minister for Foreign Trade Jose Luis Silva signed the deal together with Danish Ambassador Jonas Bering Liisberg representing the EU Council Presidency, the Colombian Minister for Trade Sergio Diaz-Granados, and De Gucht.
De Gucht said that in the coming days, the Council of the European Union will formally transmit this proposed trade agreement to the European Parliament for its consent.
"The same way we expect our Colombian and Peruvian partners to also engage with their legislators to seek an early entry into force of this agreement," he added.
De Gucht described the newly signed agreement between the EU, Colombia and Peru as yet another example of how the EU is opening markets, creating business opportunities and enhancing jobs and growth by promoting trade and investment.
"Let us not forget that in these difficult economic times it is the effect of international trade that should allow us to avoid falling back into recession in 2012. This is the potential we are tapping in today by preparing the ground for new economic parternships with key regions of Latin America," he added.
"With this agreement we have established the conditions for operators from all sides to take better advantage of the increasing complementarities within our countries, notably in the field of innovation and the knowledge economy, of value added services of procurement and of course in the trade of more traditional agricultural and industrial products," he added.
Meanwhile, Danish Ambassador Jonas Bering Liisberg said the newly signed agreement would create new business and investment opportunities for companies in the two Andean countries.
"It is an ambitious agreement that will provide the right framework to create new trade and investment opportunities for both sides," Liisberg said.
"It will also provide great benefits for the businesses of Colombia and Peru which will gain increased access to the world’s largest single market place, the EU."
He stressed the trade pact will make a valuable contribution to further reinforcing the already close relationship that existed between the EU and Colombia and Peru.
"The agreement is an instrument for strengthening our trade relations but is also a statement of our friendship and strong political, historical ties that bind Europe and Latin America together," he added.
Liisberg noted that the signing of the agreement comes just days before the European Council discusses how to reinvigorate Europe’s economic growth.
"In a period of economic slowdown, international trade is the most important engine for growth and employment," he said.
"The agreement is a major element in a very ambitious EU trade agenda that involves ongoing, potential and completed trade negotiations with many partners around the globe. I’m convinced that it will contribute to creating many European jobs in the years to come."
The Danish ambassador went on to emphasise that "the deal is based solidly on our shared commitment to democratic principles, human rights and sustainable development."