Moldovan-Turkish free trade agreement to be signed in May 2013

The Moldovan-Turkish free trade agreement will be signed within a visit paid by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Chisinau in May 2013. The statement was made within the fifth and last round of negotiations on free trade regime between Moldova and Turkey, held in Chisinau on Wednesday and Thursday. The signing of the Moldovan-Turkish free trade agreement is a EU precondition in negotiating Moldova-EU deep and comprehensive free trade agreement, the Economics Ministry’s information and press relations service has reported.

Presently, the Moldovan-Turkish trade relations are regulated by the GSP Plus regime, which is an asymmetric preferential regime. Turkey offered the regime to Moldova, providing for the Moldovan industrial goods’ export without customs duties. The agreement will liberalize the two states’ trade exchanges for about 9,000 tariff positions.

“There were negotiated transition periods for a string of industrial goods, such as: textile goods, carpets, furniture, some construction and plastic materials etc, in order to protect the local producers. The transition periods of 3,5 or 7 years are meant for these products, the head of the Economics Ministry’s department for trade policies, Inga Ionesii, said.

After negotiations, it was agreed on shares for agricultural products. Thus, the Moldovan business people could export about 30 products, such as: sugar, cereals, wine, vegetables, fruits, dairy products, cigarettes etc. At the same time, a range of agro-food products, namely, meat, grapes, eggs etc, will be exempted from the agreement.

“Import duties in Turkey are very high, and the negotiated shares will allow the Moldovan business people to assert on the Turkish market via the quality products and competitive prices”, Ionesii also said.

The last round of negotiations focused on the completion of all the juridical aspects of the agreement. The next step is the preparations for signing of the Moldovan-Turkish free trade agreement, due in May 2013.

The Moldovan-Turkish trade exchanges amounted to 402.4 million dollars during 11 months of 2012, increasing by 2.4 per cent against January-November 2011. The trade share with Turkey reached 6 per cent of the Moldovan foreign trade during 11 months of the last year, against 5.9 per cent in the same period of 2011.

Adapted from: MOLDPRES



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