Korea and Turkey agreed on key issues such as tariff concessions and dispute settlement schemes in their free trade talks, Seoul’s trade ministry said Sunday, raising the prospect of the two countries soon concluding their free trade negotiations.
During the four-day meeting in Seoul that started on Wednesday, both countries reached an agreement on tariff concessions and other key issues, while negotiations for service and investment are going to continue, the ministry said.
“The agreement at the negotiation level will be reviewed by each side and finalized,” the ministry said in a statement.
Since April 2010, the two countries have held four rounds of free trade agreement negotiations.
Last month, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed in principle to conclude their free trade negotiations in the first half of the year.
Last year, South Korea exported goods worth $5.1 billion to Turkey and imported goods worth $800 million. In 2010, their bilateral trade reached $4.26 billion.
Currently, South Korea has free trade agreements with Chile and Singapore as well as similar pacts with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and India.
A similar free trade pact with the United States is set to take into effect this week. South Korea and the European Union also implemented their free trade deal in July last year.
The country is actively seeking similar pacts with Canada and Colombia, among several other countries. (Yonhap News)