Mexico – Panama Treaty, plan to increase trade and investment between the two nations

Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico´s president and Ricardo Martinelli, president from Panamá signed yesterday, after eight months of negotiations, a Free Trade Agreement in the IX World Economic Forum on Latin America in Playa Bonita, Panama.

This Free Trade Agreement (FTA) seek to establish as a platform to produce and distribute goods and services to the north and south of the continent.

This agreement opens to Panama the gateway to the Pacific Alliance, it was signed by the Panamanian Minister of Commerce and Industry, Ricardo Quijano, and the Minister of Economy, Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal , with the presidents from Panama , Ricardo Martinelli , and Mexico , Enrique Peña Nieto, as witnesses.

Yesterday there was no official information on the tariff reduction that the FTA offers, although it was stated that its 21 chapters include areas such as market access, customs regulations and procedures relating to the origin, trade defense, investment , electronic commerce, intellectual property, solution of controversies, among others.

Both Martinelli and Peña Nieto stressed the record time in which the FTA negotiations took place of seven months as they initiated on June 30, 2013 and where formally completed on 24 March 2014, especially after two failed attempts in previous years 1999 and 2003.

Pacific Alliance was founded in 2012 by Peru, Colombia, Chile and Mexico, and Panama has already signed an FTA with them , which is an essential requirement to belong to the organization .

“We welcome all Mexican companies that want to establish in Panama, that could and should be the gateway for Mexican companies to the South American and Central American market … I’m sure this is a win- win situation and will be an advantage for all the businessmen in both countries, ” Martinelli stated.

He stressed that the FTA paves the way for his country to join the Pacific Alliance, and already proposed that the physical location of the block should be installed in Panama , since geographically is located at an intermediate point between Mexico and Chile.

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