In this file photo dated Nov 6, 2019, a man visits the Ecuador pavilion during the second China International Import Expo in Shanghai. (PHOTO / XINHUA)
China inked a free trade agreement with Ecuador on Thursday to further tap the potential of trade and investment cooperation between the two countries, according to the Ministry of Commerce.
Wang Wentao, Chinese Minister of Commerce, and Julio Jose Prado, Ecuador's Minister of Production, Foreign Trade, Investment and Fisheries, signed the agreement on behalf of the respective governments via video link, the MOC said in a news releases published on its website.
China and Ecuador will keep their markets open to each other with higher standards through the trade pact and foster a more favorable, convenient, transparent and stable business environment for enterprises, the MOC said.
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Once the FTA goes into effect, as much as 90 percent of the goods traded between China and Ecuador will be exempted from tariffs, while 60 percent of them will enjoy zero tariffs immediately, according to the free trade agreement
The agreement will further unlock the potential of trade and investment cooperation between the two countries; promote the upgrading of China-Ecuador economic and trade cooperation in all aspects; advance sustainable, stable and diversified development of bilateral trade; and deliver more benefits to people and enterprises of both countries, it added.
Once the FTA goes into effect, as much as 90 percent of the goods traded between China and Ecuador will be exempted from tariffs, while 60 percent of them will enjoy zero tariffs immediately, according to the deal.
The negotiations of China-Ecuador FTA were launched in February last year and concluded in February after a year of efficient consultations, it said, adding that the two sides will accelerate domestic steps for FTA implementation at an early date.
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China is Ecuador's second-largest trading partner. In 2022, the two countries witnessed double-digit growth in trade for the second year in a row, with bilateral trade reaching $13.1 billion, up 19.7 percent year-on-year.
With Xinhua's inputs