Philippines eyes two free trade agreements in Europe

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Europe flagThe Philippine government will be sending a team to Europe later in November for talks about possible free trade agreements (FTA) with two European blocs, a trade official said according to Business World.

“We will be sending a delegation to Europe in the third or fourth week of November to continue technical discussions on a possible Philippines-EU (European Union) FTA in Brussels and Philippines-EFTA (European Free Trade Association) FTA in Geneva,” Trade Undersecretary Adrian S. Cristobal, Jr. said at a press conference.

He added that the Philippines is still at the scoping stage, or determining which sectors will be part of an FTA, with the 28-member European Union.

Talks about a possible trade agreement between the Philippines and the EU first began on Feb. 9, 2009, after the latter’s plan of pursuing a region-to-region approach with ASEAN failed due to the political difficulties of negotiating an FTA that included Myanmar.

Singapore is the first ASEAN country having concluded an FTA – signed December 2012 – with the EU. The EU is also currently negotiating FTAs with Malaysia, Vietnam, and Thailand.

For EFTA, Cristobal said the mission will continue to explore the benefits of forging an FTA with the four-member economic bloc composed of Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Iceland, and Norway.

Currently, the Philippines has only one bilateral FTA, the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement. However, as an ASEAN member, the Philippines also enjoys the bloc’s trade agreements with Japan, China, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, and India.

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Philippine government will be sending a team to Europe later in November for talks about possible free trade agreements (FTA) with two European blocs, a trade official said according to Business World.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Europe flagThe Philippine government will be sending a team to Europe later in November for talks about possible free trade agreements (FTA) with two European blocs, a trade official said according to Business World.

“We will be sending a delegation to Europe in the third or fourth week of November to continue technical discussions on a possible Philippines-EU (European Union) FTA in Brussels and Philippines-EFTA (European Free Trade Association) FTA in Geneva,” Trade Undersecretary Adrian S. Cristobal, Jr. said at a press conference.

He added that the Philippines is still at the scoping stage, or determining which sectors will be part of an FTA, with the 28-member European Union.

Talks about a possible trade agreement between the Philippines and the EU first began on Feb. 9, 2009, after the latter’s plan of pursuing a region-to-region approach with ASEAN failed due to the political difficulties of negotiating an FTA that included Myanmar.

Singapore is the first ASEAN country having concluded an FTA – signed December 2012 – with the EU. The EU is also currently negotiating FTAs with Malaysia, Vietnam, and Thailand.

For EFTA, Cristobal said the mission will continue to explore the benefits of forging an FTA with the four-member economic bloc composed of Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Iceland, and Norway.

Currently, the Philippines has only one bilateral FTA, the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement. However, as an ASEAN member, the Philippines also enjoys the bloc’s trade agreements with Japan, China, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, and India.

 

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