Thailand has signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Chile — although it still awaits legislative approval — and upgraded ties with Peru to a strategic partnership ahead of the 21st Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Bali.
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and Chilean President Sebastián Piñera Echenique signed the agreement last Friday in Bangkok, which will remove tariffs on more than 90 percent of Chilean products to be exported to the Asian kingdom.
“For Chilean exporters, this will mean an access in preferential conditions to a market of more than 70 million people,”
Piñera Echenique said in a statement.
This FTA “is a strategic tool” for Thailand “to penetrate” Latin America and Chile’s trading partners, said Jintana Chaiyawonnagal, deputy director-general of the Thai Trade Negotiations Department. Chile is a trading center in South America and “has more than 60 bilateral trade pacts with countries worldwide,” she emphasized.
How the COVID-19 situation may affect Thailand’s export sector
Thailand’s export sector could face damage of 200-300 billion baht if the situation cannot be brought under control within six months.
The Thai National Shippers’ Council has raised a concern that the export sector might face a 200-300 billion baht toll should the COVID-19 situation not be brought under control in six months, urging the government to speed up the vaccine rollout to all segments of the population.(more…)
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