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Trade between Peru and the U.S. hits milestone

Last year trade between the United States and Peru reached a new milestone of $17.8 billion dollars, about double of what was recorded in 2009, with agricultural exports growing by more than 200 percent.

Expreso, an Ecuadorian news agency, reports that the first ten years of a new trade agreement have proven to be a turning point in the bilateral relationship and helped advance Peru’s trade with the rest of the world.

A decade ago, mining and textiles generated the majority of the Peruvian exports. But, as Peru opened up to the world, exporters began creating niches for products not commonly known outside of Peru, such as blueberries, the country’s leading agricultural export.

Edgar Vasquez, the Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism, expressed a positive situation for non-traditional exports, “despite the complex and decelerated global scenario”.
He said this is because the trade agreement with the U.S. has been a model of what they negotiate with other countries.

Peru has added about twenty free trade agreements with partners around the world since then. Vasquez emphasizes that the opening through these agreements has allowed Peru to project its GDP growth for 2019 at 2.5%.

Between 2009 and 2018 Peruvian exports to the U.S. grew by 66%, while non-traditional exports grew 134% and agricultural exports grew by 224%.

Back in 2004, Ecuador and Colombia also entered into negotiations with the U.S. regarding a free trade agreement (FTA). By 2006, due to disagreements, Ecuador abandoned the negotiations.

In 2018, Ecuadorian authorities have tried to reinvigorate relationships, with the addition of imports and exports reaching $11.9 billion dollars.

Last November, it took a great step towards this with the activation of the Trade and Investment Council (TIC), which will unlock various issues related to investment, trade and cooperation. Entrepreneurs expect this process to serve as a route finalizing a trade agreement, allowing Ecuador to match neighboring countries.

Marco Campos is Media Coordinator, Latin America for Blue Book Services