The Trade and Investment Agreement will develop a key aspect of EU relations with the Philippines, based on the EU-Philippines framework agreement that came into force in March 2018. As soon as the agreement enters into force, EFTA states lift all tariffs on imports of industrial products, including fish and other seafood originating in the Philippines. The Philippines will phase out tariffs on industrial products, including fish and other seafood, originating in an EFTA state. Certain product lines, particularly in the fish and other seafood sectors, are excluded from the removal or reduction of tariffs. Tariff concessions for industrial products, including fish and other seafood, are included in Appendix II and III. TIFA also paved the way for the continuation of meetings for a possible trade pact. In October 2018, Lopez and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer announced that bilateral trade issues between the two countries had been resolved under the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA). Philippines – Japan Economic Partnership Agreement The Philippines and Japan concluded a free trade agreement in 2008. The VPA is the Philippines` only bilateral free trade agreement covering, among other things, trade in goods, trade in services, investment, personal transport, intellectual property, customs procedures, improving the business environment and public procurement.
Negotiations for a trade and investment agreement between the EU and the Philippines began on 22 December 2015. The aim is to conclude an agreement covering a wide range of issues, including tariffs, non-tariff barriers, trade in services and investment, as well as the trade aspects of public procurement, intellectual property, competition and sustainable development. Lopez said that even without the trade agreement, Philippine exports to the United States increased by 10 percent last year. The EU works closely with ASEAN as a whole. Cooperation will be maintained through the EU-ASEAN dialogue, which includes discussions on trade and investment issues between ministers and senior economic officials. More information on EU-Philippine trade and investment negotiations, including EU-proposed texts and cycle reports Since December 2014, the Philippines has benefited from enhanced trade preferences with the EU under the EU Plus Generalised Preference System (GSP). The Special Incentive for Sustainable Development and Good Governance Scheme provides for the total elimination of tariffs for two-thirds of all product categories, with the aim of supporting sustainable development and good governance. Chapter 12 establishes a joint committee to monitor, manage and oversee the implementation of the agreement. The joint committee, which normally meets every two years, may amend the agreement or review and propose amendments in accordance with the agreement. “As you know, we were also open to that,” he added.
“They have not set a timetable (for the next round of negotiations), but with their new Trade Commissioner, we will now see their priorities.” Philippines – European Free Trade Association Free Trade Agreement The Philippines and EFTA countries – Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland – signed a free trade agreement in 2016, which is expected to enter into force in 2018.