Trade Deals across the World: October Edition


In last month’s update, we wrote about Mercosur, new trade deals for South Korea, several deals Trump is working on and some news on Serbia and Russia.

The United Kingdom with South Africa and South Korea

While talks about Brexit are still ongoing within the UK and between the UK and the EU, the United Kingdom is also signing trade deals.

Britain has agreed a deal with six southern African countries including South Africa, the continent’s most developed economy, that will ensure continuity of trade conditions after Brexit, the British High Commission in South Africa said on Wednesday.

Britain initialled an Economic Partnership Agreement with the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) – comprising South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, and eSwatini (formerly known as Swaziland) – and Mozambique

Read the full story by Reuters.

South Korea is set to complete the ratification of a free trade deal with the UK at the National Assembly before the Brexit deadline of Oct. 31, officials said Monday.

Since Britain voted to leave the European Union in June 2016, the Korean government has pushed for a bilateral deal with the UK to prevent the rupture of trade relations and ensure continuity.

Read the full story by The Korean Herald.

South Korea and Russia

South Korea is also working on a Free Trade Deal with Russia.

South Korean Economy and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki said that the South Korean government would work on a free trade agreement with Russia in the goods sector as well as investment and service.

“A South Korea-Russia FTA in the goods sector will make a great contribution to the two countries’ bilateral trade by lowering tariff rates and facilitating customs clearance,” he said.

Read the full story by Business Korea.

The United States with Japan, The United Kingdom, and Taiwan

After a long period of talks and threats, and more talks, Japan and the United States finally came to a preliminary trade deal, mainly focussing on agricultural goods.

The U.S. and Japan have taken the initial steps toward a trade deal between the two nations, lowering or removing tariffs on a number of products, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) said in a press release. Negotiations will continue to formulate a “comprehensive agreement.”

For more details and some interesting analysis read the full story by Supply Chain Dive.

Donald Trump has backed Boris Johnson to stay as PM after vowing to do a “magnificent” trade deal with the UK.

The US President said Boris was “going nowhere” despite furious Remainer MPs calling for the PM’s head.

Boris was handed a boost earlier this afternoon when Mr Trump said the US would broker a “magnificent” trade deal with the UK.

He said: “As the United Kingdom makes preparation for its exit from the European Union I have made clear that we stand ready to complete an exceptional new trade agreement that will bring opportunities to our countries.”

Read the full story by The Sun.

Taiwan Signs Two Year AG Trade Agreement With U.S.

Israel and Canada

A modernized and expanded Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA) entered into force on Sunday following ratification by both governments, widening the sectors of trade cooperation between the countries.

The modernized CIFTA is one of the world’s most liberal trade agreements to date, including clauses recognizing women’s rights and gender equality in trade. Updates were also made to existing provisions on dispute settlement, institutional provisions, market access for goods and rules of origin.

Read the full story by The Jerusalem Post.

EU and Australia

The European Union and Australia are getting ready to move into the next round of negotiating of a free trade agreement, but not before the EU makes some things clear about sustainability on the other side of the planet…

The European Union will push Australia to clean up its petrol standards – which currently allow for dirtier fuel than India and China – as part of negotiations on a new free trade agreement.

Europe will also be using the EU-Australia free trade agreement to cement Australia’s support for emissions reduction targets agreed to under the Paris accord, with Europe flagging it wants the “respect and full implementation of the Paris agreement” underscored in the text of the agreement.

Read the full story by The Guardian.

Other Deals

Mauritius Agrees to Sign Free Trade Agreement With China
Read the full story by Bloomberg

Mozambique: Indonesia signs preferential trade agreement
Read the full story by Macau Business.

Free trade deal with Eurasian Economic Union will cut tariffs, boost trade and investment links
Read the full story by The Straits Times