Overview of regional trade negotiations and agreements. For news and to learn more about the progress made on trade agreements and negotiations, visit the Legal Instruments of Integration Observatory (IJI).
This month’s trends
Between late November and December 2016, the global trade policy agenda continued to be defined by the potential impact of the US presidential elections on the global trade map. Given this, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is beginning to counterbalance the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). At the regional level, there was less dynamism within existing agreements and trade negotiations both within and outside the region. The most noteworthy exceptions to this are Mexico, Central America, Uruguay, and Ecuador, which are continuing to make progress on agreements and negotiation processes with partners both inside and outside the region. The Pacific Alliance was the integration scheme that made the most headway during this period, followed by the Central American Integration System (SICA).
Over the course of the month, progress was made on 17 existing agreements and 5 trade negotiations (one new negotiation and four at an advanced stage).
- Ecuador–European Free Trade Association (EFTA): Ecuador and the European Free Trade Association promote bilateral agreement (link in Spanish)
- Uruguay–China: Uruguay and China set 2018 for an FTA (link in Spanish)
- Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP): Japan formally ratifies the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (link in Spanish), Mexican Senate postpones ruling on TPP until February (link in Spanish)
- Central America–South Korea: Fine tuning the FTA between Central America and South Korea (link in Spanish)
- Colombia, Peru, Ecuador–EU: Commercial agreement between Ecuador and the European Union to enter into force in January 2017 (link in Spanish)
- Ecuador–EU: Ecuador’s national assembly greenlights trade agreement with the European Union (link in Spanish)
- Uruguay–China: Uruguay seeks FTA with China (link in Spanish)
Selected news on trade agreements currently in force
- Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America—People’s Trade Agreement (ALBA–TCP) What are ALBA’s aims, 12 years on? (link in Spanish)
- Pacific Alliance: Argentina and Chile foster MERCOSUR–Pacific Alliance meeting (link in Spanish), Initiatives to consolidate the Pacific Alliance (link in Spanish), Chile and Peru see the Pacific Alliance as a shield against protectionism (link in Spanish)
- Association of Caribbean States: Cuba and Caribbean States consolidate their bilateral ties (link in Spanish)
- Latin American Integration Association (ALADI): ALADI has a new database of statistics on international trade in services, ALADI argues for “greater fluency” in trade (link in Spanish)
- Central America–Dominican Republic: Dominican Republic and Central America renew their commitment to SICA (in Spanish)
- Chile–People’s Republic of China: Chile and China sign 12 cooperation agreements (in Spanish)
- Colombia–Northern Triangle: Colombia’s growing business interests in the Northern Triangle (link in Spanish)
- Honduras–Canada: Honduran companies encouraged to export to China (link in Spanish)
- Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR): Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay agree to activate MERCOSUR dispute settlement mechanism (link in Spanish), Venezuela’s suspension from MERCOSUR confirmed (link in Spanish)
- Peru–People’s Republic of China: Peru and China agree to a study to optimize bilateral FTA (link in Spanish)
- Central American Integration System (SICA): Streamlining trade, a key issue for SICA (link in Spanish), Costa Rica to take over pro-tempore presidency of SICA (link in Spanish), Honduras and Guatemala integrate their customs operations (link in Spanish)
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA): Mexico still in favor of NAFTA (link in Spanish), Intense, asymmetrical trade between Mexico and the United States (link in Spanish)