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    Costa Rica Decides to Negotiate a Free Trade Agreement with the United Arab Emirates and Israel

    Negotiations are expected to start no later than the second half of 2023

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    The Ministry of Foreign Trade (Comex) decided to negotiate free trade agreements (FTAs) with the United Arab Emirates and with Israel.In the case of the first country, it would be the first agreement that Costa Rica signs with a Middle Eastern country. While on the side of the United Arab Emirates, it would be the first to enter into force with any Latin American country. In both cases, the ministry reported that this decision responds to its strategy of seeking new markets.

    Negotiation with the United Arab Emirates

    Comex reported that it expects an agreement that covers issues of trade in goods and services, investment, chapters on rules of origin, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, among others.Negotiations are expected to start no later than the second half of 2023.

    The United Arab Emirates, for its part, seeks to diversify its economy and has been interested in the exportable supply and human talent of Costa Rica.According to Comex, it is an active country in the sphere of international trade and investment. In addition, it has been chosen as the venue and to chair the next Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization in 2024.

    The decision was made on March 28th during a visit by Comex Minister Manuel Tovar to the United Arab Emirates, where he met with his counterpart, Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi.“This agreement would position itself as a key platform for cooperation projects on issues related to trade and investment with this country,” Tovar commented.

    Negotiation with Israel

    A day later, Minister Tovar visited Israel and decided to start negotiations with Israel`s Minister of Economy and Industry of that country, NirBarkat.According to Tovar, Israel is a leader in innovation industries such as high technology, cybersecurity, agrotechnology and clean technologies.Costa Rica, for its part, is an important supplier of high-quality agricultural products.Currently the country has trade agreements negotiated with 59 countries.

     

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