The President of Chile, Sebastián Piñera, and the President of Ecuador, Lenín Moreno, presided this Thursday over the telematic signing of the new Free Trade Agreement between the two countries, which is set to generate important benefits for micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses.
The agreement addresses trade in services, e-business, telecommunications, and topics relating to labor, the environment, gender, and SMEs.
“This will undoubtedly allow us to better address the challenges that will arise along the road towards a better future for both countries,” emphasized the President after signing the document. He was accompanied at the signing ceremony by Foreign Affairs Minister Andrés Allamand.
The treaty includes a chapter on e-business matters, which will have one of the greatest impacts on micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses. This will facilitate electronic transactions and improve the conditions under which Chilean suppliers of digital products and services will be able to operate in the Ecuadorian market.
The agreement also encourages Chilean suppliers of goods and services to participate in public tenders on an equal footing with Ecuadorian companies.
“This is an agreement for the 21st century, for the future, and something that we undoubtedly value and appreciate deeply,” added President Sebastián Piñera.
“It will allow our countries and our peoples to have more opportunities and our economies to develop more strongly; we will be able to create more and better jobs, and have better prospects of gaining access to the technologies and the world of the future,” said the President.
Ecuador is currently Chile’s fifth largest trading partner in Latin America and the seventh most important export market for non-traditional services. In 2019, trade between the two countries amounted to US$2 billion.
Chile and Ecuador have held many talks and rapprochements during the administrations of Presidents Piñera and Moreno in order to strengthen commercial and bilateral ties.
Both countries were founding nations of the Forum for the Progress and Development of South America (PROSUR), when Ecuador had observer status in the Pacific Alliance, a bloc composed of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru, the eighth most important economic and export power in the world.