Costa Rica defended its coffee production by leaving it out of trade deal with Colombia. Now the South American country wants it include in the Tratado Libre de Comerica (TLC) – Free Trade Agreement.  In the photo, the coffe plantation of David Montero (hat), in the area of Los Santos. (Rafael Pacheco, La Nacion)

Q COSTA RICA – The Costa Rica food and industry expressed their opposition to any changes to the tariff conditions for a group of products in the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Colombia.

The opposition follows a request by Colombia for immediate entry of food and industrial products, through a list of requests for review or renegotiation of the trade deal in force between since August 2016.

The Cámara Costarricense de la Industria Alimentaria (Cacia) – Costa Rican Chamber of Food Industry –  and the Cámara de Industrias de Costa Rica (CICR) –  Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica – against any renegotiation of the agreed conditions.

From a statement issued by the Costa Rican Chamber of the Food Industry (CACIA):

“February, 2017. The Costa Rican Chamber of the Food Industry (CACIA) has asked the Ministry of Foreign Trade (COMEX) not to make changes to the conditions agreed in the Free Trade Agreement between Costa Rica and Colombia, in force since August 2016.

“Annually, COMEX reviews Free Trade Agreements and attends to consultations with various business sectors. Within this context, a review was requested of 321 tariff items in the bilateral agreement signed with Colombia, among which there is a large group of food industry products that were under some type of protective conditions.”

In total there are 321 tariff items or products in which Colombia wants a change.

Mario Montero, spokesperson for the Cacia, considers the Colombia request is line with what would be requested of Costa Rica for its to the Alianza del Pacfico (Pacific Alliance) trade bloc.

Montero took the opportunity to remind government officials that the Cacia is also against Costa Rica’s membership to the group of countries currently formed by Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile.


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