This is the third trade agreement signed between South Korea and the European Union. The first, the Agreement on Cooperation and Mutual Assistance in Customs Matters, was signed on 13 May 1997.  This agreement allows the establishment of a common competition policy between the two parties.  The second agreement, the Framework Agreement on Trade and Cooperation, entered into force on 1 April 2001. The framework aims to strengthen cooperation in different sectors, including transport, energy, science and technology, industry, environment and culture.   The chemicals covered by the agreement can be found here: Annex 2-E chemicals. These bodies also offer the opportunity to find solutions to market access problems and to strengthen regulatory cooperation. An annual trade committee at ministerial level has an oversight role and aims to ensure the proper functioning of the agreement. The agreement ensures that the competition rules also apply to state-controlled undertakings or undertakings and prohibits certain types of subsidies considered to be particularly harmful to competition.
If the EU or South Korea use subsidies, they must report annually the total quantity, nature and supply of subsidies. Important note: it is important that the declaration is correctly completed, otherwise it may be rejected by customs. Please refer to the official text of the declaration of origin set out in Annex III to the Official Agreement. The text contains explanatory guidance and is available in all applicable languages. The free trade agreement also covers non-tariff barriers, notably in the automotive, pharmaceutical, medical device and electronics sectors. Negotiations began in May 2007 and are expected to be completed in March 2009; However, several issues had to be resolved before the agreement could be concluded.  Seven rounds of negotiations on different aspects of the agreements were completed, during which issues were addressed with regard to several issues such as rules of origin, motor trade and the authorisation of certain tariff reductions.  The EU and South Korea are cooperating to recognise disease-free zones to increase your predictability as an exporter. Italian and French carmakers believe the deal would hurt them badly by allowing South Korean carmakers to compete with them in the EU. Adolfo Urso, an Italian junior foreign trade minister, said the Italian government could veto the deal based on the concerns of European automakers, which it had initially done in September 2010.
Business analysts such as ECIPE`s Hosuk Lee-Makiyama have dismissed the auto industry`s lobbying as a “myth”: while EU exports to Korea are estimated at 400%, most Asian car brands make their cars in the EU and Korean cars account for a negligible share of imports into the EU to threaten even Europe`s most inefficient car manufacturers.  Italy dropped its objections due to the postponement of the provisional application of the Agreement from 1 January 2011 to 1 July 2011.  The trade agreement contains enforcement measures for infringement of intellectual property rights such as “Electrical safety allows South Korea to continue to seek third-party certification for a limited list of 53 items, if this can justify them presenting a risk to human health and safety. . . .
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