South Korean President Moon Jae-in and President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte had a summit meeting in Busan City on Nov. 25. After the meeting, the trade ministers of South Korea and the Philippines agreed on the early achievement package of the goods negotiations of the two countries’ FTA talks and signed a joint declaration in the presence of the two presidents.
The two governments have had four rounds of negotiations since the initiation of the FTA talks in June this year. This time, the trade ministers confirmed the outcome of the negotiations in step with the summit meeting.
In the joint declaration, the two governments said that they would try to conclude the FTA in the first half of next year. Also, they agreed to apply early market opening to some items of mutual interest. For example, South Korea is going to open its banana, apparel and vehicle airbag markets and the Philippines is going to open its car brake and clutch, medicine and synthetic rubber markets.
The early achievement package is scheduled to be discussed down the road with regard to additional tariff concession and then will be reflected in the final outcome of the FTA negotiations.