A statement of the Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica (CICR):
Industrialists are wary FTA with Colombia
• Costa Rican Company at a disadvantage in infrastructure, access to credit, red tape, energy costs and raw materials.
• According PROCOMER, in 2011 Costa Rica exported to Colombia $48.2 million, while importing $455.6 million dollars from the South American country.
June 15, 2012.
Facing the possible launch of negotiations on a Free Trade Agreement, FTA, between Costa Rica and Colombia, the Chamber of Industry believes that trade liberalization in this country must be carefully analyzed, since for many manufacturing companies in various subsectors it represents a serious threat.
For the CICR negotiating more free trade agreements is not the best way to create a successful in trade policy today, as there are still a lot of problems at the national level, reducing the country's competitiveness relative to other trading partners.
According to Marco Meneses, President of the CICR, there are still unresolved problems relating to infrastructure, access to credit, energy costs, paperwork, monitoring of markets and raw material costs, including limited competitiveness of domestic firms, in local and international markets.
"With the signing of more trade agreements we are eliminating the import tariff, the only mechanism of protection for the productive sector against imports from third party countries. Added to this is the little use made of some of these FTA’s", said Meneses.
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Industrialists say they are at a disadvantage in competing with a country that offers great benefits to its companies, and have made calls to respect most of the sector, which opposes the treaty.
A statement from the Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica (CICR) reads:
Facing the fourth round of negotiations for a trade agreement with Colombia
The Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica believes that opening the domestic market to Colombian products constitutes a serious threat to the stability of the sector.
A statement from The Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica (CICR in Spanish):
CICR position before the start of First Round of Negotiations
While various business sectors are trying to protect their interests from being affected, the governments involved want negotiations to proceed at an extremely fast pace.
The Costa Rican Ministry of Foreign Trade seems to be deaf to the complaints of the agricultural and industrial sectors, opposed to the FTA with Colombia, and are pressing for negotiations to be speeded up.
Beyond the dubious benefits of an FTA itself, what Costa Rica is aiming to do is to complete the requirements to become a full member of Pacific Alliance.
The presidents of Costa Rica, Laura Chinchilla, and Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, launched negotiations for an FTA between both countries in San Jose today.