China And Singapore Free Trade Agreement

China and New Zealand formally began free trade negotiations in December 2004 and concluded negotiations in December 2007 after 15 rounds of negotiations. Negotiations on the free trade agreement began in August 2006 and both sides completed negotiations in September 2008, during eight rounds of negotiations. The China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement is a comprehensive free trade agreement that includes trade in goods, trade in services, staff flows and customs procedures. For China, the CSFTA abolished tariffs on all Chinese exports to Singapore. While most sectors were already tariff-free for China, some sectors, such as beer producers, benefited greatly from the agreement. China has also benefited from better access to investment in Singapore`s education services sector. As far as trade in goods is concerned, at least 90% of the goods of both parties will not have gradual access to customs on the markets of the other party. In terms of services, Costa Rica will open an additional 45 sectors to China, including telecommunications, education and tourism, while China will open seven more service sectors in Costa Rica. The protocol for modernizing the Free Trade Agreement between China and Singapore includes cooperation in six sectors included in the original CSFTA – rules of origin, customs procedures and trade facilitation, trade remedies, trade in services, investment and economic cooperation – and adds three new sectors – e-commerce, competition policy and the environment. Under the free trade agreement, about 99.7% of Chinese exports to Switzerland will be zero tariffs and the free share of tariffs on Swiss exports to China is 84.2%. Bilateral trade between China and Costa Rica increased in 2014 to $5.3 billion, a 145 percent increase over 2006.

As the trade war continues with the United States, China is actively diversifying its economic relations with new and former partners and strengthening cooperation with belt and road countries, including Singapore. Negotiations began in 2005 and were greatly accelerated after Chinese President Xi`s state visit to Australia in November 2014. The agreement was signed on June 17, 2015. Under the agreement, almost 96% of products are subject to zero tariffs relative to the tariff position and almost 100% in terms of trading volume China Briefing is produced by Dezan Shira-Associates. The company supports foreign investors throughout Asia from branches worldwide, including in Dalian, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong. Readers can write to china@dezshira.com to get more help in their business activities in China. In 2002, when CAFTA had just been established, the volume of bilateral trade was $54.8 billion. In 2014, the volume of bilateral trade increased to $480.4 billion, and increased ninefold in 12 years, with annual growth of 20%.

On 7 April 2008, Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao and former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark witnessed the signing in Beijing of the China-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which came into force on 1 October 2008. The agreement is the first comprehensive free trade agreement ever signed by China, as well as China`s first free trade agreement with a developed country. The expanded CSFTA is expected to strengthen trade and investment between the two countries, while allowing Singaporean companies more access to the market in China.

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