Chile and Brazil conclude free trade agreement talks

BRASILIA – Chile and Brazil have concluded negotiations for a free trade agreement between the two countries, which is expected to be signed before the end of the year, official sources said.

After four rounds of negotiations, the representatives of the two nations finalized the preliminaries of the bilateral agreement, which will complement the one already in force between Mercosur and Chile, said the Brazilian Foreign Ministry.

The agreement between Mercosur, a bloc composed of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, and Chile has already allowed for the elimination of import tariffs for bilateral trade. The new agreement will go further and include 17 new sections, such as trade in services and electronics, telecommunications, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, elimination of obstacles to trade, intellectual property and a chapter dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), among others.

In this regard, Brazil and Chile undertook to eliminate the roaming tariff for data and mobile telephony between the two countries. On the other hand, it will be the first time that Brazil assumes, within the framework of a bilateral trade agreement, commitments on electronic commerce, good regulatory practices, anti-corruption transparency, regional and global value chains, gender, environment and labor issues.

Agreements signed recently by the two countries will also be incorporated into the text, such as the Protocol of Public Purchases and the Protocol of Investments in Financial Institutions. Negotiations on the free trade agreement began on April 27 during a meeting between President Piñera and his counterpart Michel Temer.

“The new agreement will help boost trade and investment flows between Brazil and Chile, in the sectors of both goods and services. It will constitute, at the same time, a vector of approximation between the Mercosur and the Pacific Alliance and of reinforcement of the regional integration “, indicated the Brazilian chancellery.

Chile is one of the members of the Pacific Alliance together with Colombia, Peru and Mexico. Chile is also Brazil’s second largest trading partner in South America and an important destination for Brazilian investments in the region. In 2017, the commercial exchange between the two countries reached 8,500 million dollars, which represented an increase of 22% over the previous year. Between January and September of this year, the figure reached 7,210 million dollars, 13% compared to the same period of 2017.

Brazil is Chile’s largest trading partner in Latin America and the main destination of Chilean investments abroad , worth 31,000 million dollars.–MercoPress