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Panama and Beijing open negotiation of "Modern" FTA that opens Latin A

Viewed 1767 times 2018-7-11 22:59 |System category:News

  • Panama and China installed today in the Panamanian capital the first round of negotiations of a free trade agreement (FTA) that they claim is "modern" and positions the Central American country as a gateway for Chinese products and investments in the region.

    "The negotiators will cover specific issues, and both sides will negotiate a 'modern', and comprehensive free trade agreement," Chinese ambassador to Panama Wei Qiang told reporters.

    The diplomat said that China defends trade negotiations in which the key word is "win-win and reciprocal benefit", with an emphasis on the one that contributes to the consolidation of bilateral and international relations.

    The Panamanian Minister of Commerce and Industry, Augusto Arosemena, said that Panama has among its goals to position itself as a gateway for China's products and investments for the entire region through the FTA.

    "An FTA is not everything, but if we do not make the changes to facilitate exports, we will not be able to take advantage of it, so we must have the vision and challenge to break these barriers and knots, and that our authorities facilitate bringing the products not only to China, but to other markets, "said the minister.

    This first round of negotiation will be extended until Friday to standardize, and agree on terminology, definitions and concepts of the FTA.

    There are nine working groups to address issues related to legal framework, rules of cooperation, legislation on sanitary and phytosanitary measures, intellectual property regulations, analysis of barriers to trade and safeguard measures.

    Arosemena stressed that the Panamanian negotiating mission included representatives of the private sector in order to generate effective interaction with both parties.

    "All the countries that enter into negotiations with large trading partners may have to make important changes, that is why (in the case of these negotiations) they analyze with the private sector and more than 50 unions, see what we can improve and change for exports to take place, "Arosemena said.

    The next round of negotiations is scheduled for August of this year in Beijing, which will determine the next dates of the approach of the FTA.

    The governments of both countries officially launched negotiations for the FTA on June 12 at a ceremony in Beijing, coinciding with the first anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.

    (Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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