The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism confirmed that between this Monday, March 7 and Friday, March 11, Colombia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will advance the first round of negotiations to achieve a Free Trade Agreement (TLC).
The Colombian negotiating team, led by Luis Felipe Quintero, will discuss with the Middle Eastern country issues such as market access for goods and services, trade defense, dispute settlement, technical barriers to trade, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, rules of origin, trade facilitation and customs procedures and legal and institutional issues.
“The United Arab Emirates represent a complementary market compared to the Colombian, offering great opportunities for the agricultural and food sector. It is a region that imports from the world about US$300,000 million and within them, approximately US$5,000 million correspond to food. So there are great opportunities,” said the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, María Ximena Lombana Villalba.
It is worth noting that Colombia’s exports of goods to this market reached US$162 million in 2021, of which US$32 million, that is, about a fifth, corresponded to non-mining goods.
The Ministry clarified that the negotiation is being carried out after having carried out work to identify opportunities for Colombian products, especially for the agricultural and food sectors, and after conversations and coordination with the private sector.