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Congress approves Chile-Argentina Trade Agreement

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

The Senate today approved, by 34 votes in favor, the Trade Agreement between the Republic of Chile and the Republic of Argentina. This leaves it ready for enactment. This new agreement complements the provisions already present in the Economic Complementation Agreement 35, between Chile and MERCOSUR, whose validity dates from 1996.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Roberto Ampuero, expressed his satisfaction because this agreement " brings us closer to Argentina, with whom we have a strategic relationship". He also pointed out that this occurs "almost in exact terms, 40 years after both countries were about to go to war. This is a very clear expression of the level of integration, understanding, comprehension and joint vision of the future that the two countries have".

Through the negotiation of this new treaty, Argentina and Chile intend to broaden and strengthen the legal instruments that currently govern us in commercial matters, with provisions in areas as diverse as Investments, Services, Public Procurement, Telecommunications and Electronic Commerce. Likewise, the Agreement perfects and complements existing technical, sanitary and phytosanitary standards, as well as customs procedures.

It also includes innovative chapters on topics such as Environment, Labor, Gender, SMEs, Cooperation and Competition Policy.

It is projected that the agreement will generate concrete benefits for both countries, such as new commercial opportunities in services and public procurement (especially for SMEs), the promise to eliminate "roaming" in telecommunications, a more modern and balanced legal framework for the development and protection of investments, greater agility and certainty in bilateral trade of goods and the creation of a space for cooperation in a novel field such as electronic commerce, among other matters.