Pacific Alliance Free Trade Agreement

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This agreement contains the parameters, institutional architecture and rules that will govern the process of political and economic articulation and cooperation between Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru within the framework of the Pacific Alliance; the objectives of the Alliance and the measures to be taken to achieve them; inter alia, the institutions, their competences and the manner in which agreements are adopted, the procedure for participation as an observer State and the accession of new States Parties. Canada has also been mentioned as a candidate for alliance membership, and Mexican Deputy Foreign Minister Sergio Alcocer has described it as a “natural choice.” [18] It concluded free trade agreements with the four founding members and was encouraged by regional leaders to join the alliance. However, the Canadian government has not yet improved its observer status as a candidate observer, as it is still in the process of deciding whether to become a member or not. [18] [19] Canada has concluded comprehensive and ambitious free trade agreements with the four members of the Alliance. Luz María de la Mora, Undersecretary of State for Foreign Trade at the Mexican Secretariat for Economic Affairs, said: “Four Latin American countries have created the Pacific Alliance (PA) to promote growth and development by seizing the opportunities of economic integration and building bridges to the Asia-Pacific region, as it offers the most promising prospects in terms of economic growth and innovation. If we look at the export forecasts for 2021, the IMF notes that exports will increase by 1.3% in Latin America, but by 6.7% in Asia. As members of the PA, we are determined to build bridges with Asia-Pacific countries, as they are a driver of economic activity. For this reason, in 2017, we decided to start negotiations with countries such as Singapore, Australia and New Zealand to become PA Associated States. We are about to conclude our first negotiations with Singapore. The PA represents a potential market of 230 million people.

We export $627 billion globally and account for 38% of foreign direct investment in Latin America, which can complement trade and investment opportunities with partners in Asia in sectors such as agribusiness, chemicals, vehicle manufacturing, auto parts and services, to name a few. We have also developed a cooperation agenda focused on trade facilitation, SME development, education and innovation through capacity building and exchange of technical expertise with eight Asia-Pacific countries currently holding PA observer status – Korea, the Philippines, India, Indonesia, Japan, China, Singapore and Thailand. Building bridges with the countries of the Asia-Pacific region is a sure bet for the Pacific Alliance to consolidate itself as the most forward-looking integration mechanism in Latin America and promote the economic growth, development and well-being of our countries. In 2019, Singapore`s trade in goods with the PA totaled $6.1 billion, accounting for 33.2 percent of the country`s total trade with Latin America, according to Singapore`s Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Paraguay, a founding member of Mercosur and an observer of the Pacific Alliance, has begun to conclude free trade agreements with its current members with a view to a possible application for membership. [29] Paraguay was suspended by Mercosur after the impeachment of Fernando Lugo, although Paraguay called on Mercosur to lift the sanction. After the election and inauguration of Horacio Cartes, Paraguay has so far affirmed that “Paraguay will not abandon Mercosur”, but has assured that it will try to join the alliance. [30] The government said it would consider joining the Pacific Alliance and Mercosur. [29] [31] During his election campaign and at post-election press conferences, Argentine President Mauricio Macri expressed his desire to bring his country closer to the Pacific Alliance and to work towards integration between his country`s Mercosur bloc and bloc. [33] A free trade agreement with the Pacific Alliance will benefit Maori while protecting their rights.

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