On Monday President Laura Chinchilla signed Costa Rica’s Free Trade Agreement with China (CFTA), the last step required to implement a deal that would allow 70 percent of all goods produced in the country to enter Chinese markets without tariffs (TT, June 3).
“This agreement is an excellent example of this government’s vision to generate more and better opportunities for everyone,” Chinchilla said in a press release. “China is now the second largest economy in the world, projecting an average growth of 8 percent annually over the next five years.”
“Strengthening relationships with a country that is the world’s second largest economy is clearly a great opportunity that we must devote our best efforts to,” said Costa Rica’s Foreign Trade Minister Anabel González.
According to González, between 2000 and 2010, trade between both countries grew from $90 million to nearly $1.3 billion.
After Monday’s signing ceremony, Agriculture Minister Gloria Abraham, along with Wei Chuanzhong, China’s deputy director of General administration Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, also signed a food safety protocol that will allow Costa Rican producers to export meat to the Asian country. Costa Rica also plans to continue exporting bananas, leather and other products.