EU FTAs under used - is that a surprise?

Posted on: 31/01/2018

The full potential of European Union free trade agreements (FTAs) remains untapped to the tune of almost 72 billion euros ($89 billion), UNCTAD and the National Board of Trade Sweden say in a new report. This is the amount that European exporters overpaid because they did not take full advantage of the reduced tariffs offered by the FTAs that the EU as a bloc has signed with a variety of both developed and developing countries.  READ FULL REPORT

The authors of the report said it analyses the use of the EU's free trade agreements "in reality" and not merely what is available in the agreements on paper.

"This is important as the EU is one of the most active negotiators of FTAs at the global level with a variety of developing countries and most recently least developed countries, and because EU companies have favourable trade conditions - including through reduced tariffs - thanks to these FTAs," Mr. Kasteng said.

Mr. Inama added: "Still, many companies report that they have difficulties taking advantage of the preferential tariffs in the FTAs, which often has to do with the fact that the rules on proving a product's origin - a requirement for reduced tariffs - are complex."

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