Pacific Alliance and Singapore sign Free Trade Agreement

  • The Asian country is about to become the first Associated State of the integration bloc.

January 26, 2022 – In the framework of the XVI Summit of Presidents of the Pacific Alliance, the Trade ministers of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru, on the one hand, and that of Singapore, on the other, signed the Free Trade Agreement, whose negotiations ended in July 2021.

This instrument must now comply with the procedures before the legislative bodies of each of the countries, and in the case of Colombia, it must subsequently pass to the endorsement of the Constitutional Court.

The Agreement includes 25 chapters in disciplines such as: market access for goods, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, rules of origin, technical barriers to trade, economic and customs cooperation, trade facilitation, investment, e-commerce, cross-border trade in services, maritime services, telecommunications, temporary entry of business persons, state-owned enterprises, public procurement, competition policy, good regulatory practices, gender, SMEs and legal and institutional matters.

The signing of this Agreement marks a milestone for this integration initiative because Singapore will become the first Associated State of the Pacific Alliance.

The negotiations with the Asian economy complement the trade relationship, encourage the attraction of investments, facilitate government procurement contracts and enhance the access of service providers to a wide range of sectors.

It also opens the door to cooperation in various areas such as energy, food trade, the digital economy, infrastructure and urban solutions, port management and logistics, and the interoperability of Foreign Trade Single Windows.

Reaching the Singapore market through this trade agreement will allow the countries of the Alliance to use regional inputs from different countries enhancing regional production chains. It is expected to attract investors from that country to the extended market of the bloc as a productive and export platform to the region.

The Pacific Alliance is made up of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru. It has a population of 230 million, a per capita gross domestic product (GDP) of USD 19,000 and exports of USD 627 billion. This makes the group the eighth largest exporter in the world. The Asian country became an Observer State of the Pacific Alliance in 2014 and a candidate for Associate State in 2017. Negotiations for a Trade Agreement were finalized in July 2021, after four years of deliberations.