Fri, Feb 29, 2008 - Page 12 News List

FTA with El Salvador effective tomorrow

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

The free trade agreement (FTA) between Taiwan and El Salvador is set to take effect tomorrow, Ministry of Economic Affairs officials said yesterday.

This will be the nation's fourth FTA to come into force after those signed with Panama, Guatemala and Nicaragua, the officials said.

The government began three-party FTA talks with El Salvador and Honduras in May 2006 and reached an agreement in November the same year.

Taiwan officially signed the FTAs with the two Central American allies in El Salvador on May 7 last year.

However, the FTA between Taiwan and Honduras is still awaiting completion of required legal procedures in Honduras before it can be implemented.

After the implementation of the Taiwan-El Salvador FTA, El Salvador will grant tariff-free treatment to 3,590 Taiwanese products, while Taiwan will reciprocate by offering the same treatment to 5,688 El Salvadoran products.

Ministry officials said that implementation of the agreement was expected to strengthen trade, investment and technological cooperation between Taiwan and El Salvador and increase opportunities for Taiwanese and El Salvadoran businesses.

In addition, the FTA will help Taiwanese businesses make inroads into the American market and assist El Salvodoran businesses in gaining access to the Asia-Pacific market, the officials said.

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