Canada-South Korea free-trade deal shows small gains for both sides

Canada’s free-trade deal with South Korea will hurt the domestic auto sector, but the pain will be softened by the fact that Canadians will have a bit more money to buy new cars, according to the first detailed analysis of the trade pact.

 The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement took effect on Jan. 1, and the C.D. Howe Institute is releasing a report on Thursday that estimates the expected impact of the deal over the next 20 years.

Overall, the research concludes the deal will show small and comparable gains for both sides. Canada will get an additional $3.1-billion in gross domestic product in contrast to $2.3-billion for South Korea. However, South Korea will do slightly better than Canada when the effect is measured as a percentage of GDP, according to the institute.

The report projects production will decline by $114-million for auto makers in Canada because cheaper imports will be available from South Korea, which will increase its exports to this country by $1.2-billion. Read more:


Public Procurement in FTAs: The Challenges for Malaysia

Malaysia’s GDP was ranked by the IMF at 35th globally in 2013. The country has a major commodity sector and wide-ranging export-base manufacturing and service industries. Malaysia has great potential to grow through further trade liberalization. However, many of the goods and services produced now are typically supplied to government agencies under decades-long government procurement contracts. A Recent Study by Malaysia-based Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) points out that public spending on procurement currently stands at around 25 percent of the annual GDP in 2014. The study also shows that long-term government procurement policies have limited the competitiveness of domestic businesses, and have prevented the country from enjoying the full benefits of global trade. Read more:

Blog Share: Progress on TPP Deal With U.S. But a Gap Remains: Japan Official | By Lucian Cernat

Whether the 12-nation Trans Pacific Deal will conclude in the near future largely depends on the degree to which U.S. and Japan are willing to compromise on agriculture issues. Reuters reported last week that progress in U.S. talks with Japan towards a Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact is encouraging, but difficult issues remain, the acting deputy U.S. trade representative said on Wednesday. Hopes of sealing the deal this year took a blow last month, when talks between the two nations seen as key to concluding the ambitious 12-nation trade pact hit a snag, with each side blaming the other for a stalemate over farm exports.The United States insists that Japan lower barriers to agricultural imports, but Japan wants to protect sensitive products, including pork, beef, dairy and sugar. “We were encouraged by the progress we made this week during our negotiations, but we need to underscore that the issues before us are tough,” Wendy Cutler told reporters at Japan’s foreign ministry, following four days of talks with Japan’s deputy chief negotiator, Hiroshi Oe. Read more: 

Froman, Vilsack, Farm Advisors Talk TPP

Farm groups and Republicans have stepped up pressure on the Obama administration to insist that Tokyo eliminate all of its agricultural tariffs. Under criticism for being too soft on Japan, Der Slot Book of Ra uberzeugt damit durch eine Mischung aus klassischen. Agricultural Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman are scheduled to meet with the Agricultural Advisory Committee (APAC). The meeting will likely revert more focus on the Trans-Pacific Partnership as a result, although the topic is the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Read more: 

Guest Blog: The Australian View of the TPP and the RCEP

Many Australians support the United States in its endeavor to advance Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. To Australia, the TPP is seen as a framework setting exercise for Asia’s economic relations. Supporters also favor Chinese participation in the TPP, hoping China will enhance its integration in the Asia-Pacific while American trade pivots to Asia. However many argue that Washington is its own worst enemy in the project.They claim that Americans cannot expect other TPP partners to go further on investment rules, government procurement, and intellectual property rights protections without agreeing to revisit U.S. market access barriers. If the United States fails to revisit such barriers Australia may turn towards its fallback options, one of which is the ASEAN + 6 Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) project. Read more: 

Iran, Qatar Mulling Establishment of Joint Free Trade Zone

Iran and Qatar begin are currently in the workings of a joint free trade zone. Already, the two Persian Gulf countries signed protocols to increase mutual cooperation in politics, economics, defense, security, and culture. In a recent trip, Iranian officials visited Qatar’s free economic zones, just after Qatari officials became acquainted with the economic and trade capacities of Iran’s Persian Gulf Qeshm Island. Both foreign ministers share a mutual enthusiasm for the new ties. Read more:


Moldova is working with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to steer its economy towards greater regional and global integration. After signing an agreement, Moldova will have free trade areas that permit access to two major markets: the European Union (EU) and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIES). Programs are  currently being crafted to instruct businesses on best practices for adjusting and benefiting from the new trade environment. Read more:

Philip Morris : TTIP: Civil Society Protests Expand Against ‘Undemocratic’ Trade Pact

The European Commission agreed earlier this year to launch a process of public consultation on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). And, since early May, after demonstrations by numerous consumer, environmental protection and labor groups, the TTIP has become a theme debated across society, and criticism of the way the EC and the U.S. government, in close cooperation with corporate lobbyist groups, have managed the secret negotiations is now general. Here is a case when lacking government transparency meet with misunderstanding for trade liberalization. More education needed to inform the public of benefits of trade liberalization. Read more: 

What is the role of States in Global Trade? Florida World Trade Month Begins

The trader’s importance to the state will be celebrated this month in a series of conferences, seminars and training opportunities in Florida. For a long time, people have assumed that free trade agreement has very little to do with our everyday lives as income taxes since it is negotiated by the federal government. The preconception has proven to be misleading as the U.S. local businesses have become increasingly engaged with international businesses.  Florida World Trade Month begins this Month and it is said that 17% of the local economy is fueled by international business and among its exporters 95% are small businesses. Click Here