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S. Korea, UAE hold formal talks for free trade deal

By Yonhap

Published : Oct. 4, 2023 - 09:57

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President Yoon Suk Yeol walks with Emirati leader Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan at a state luncheon held at the United Arab Emirates presidential office on Jan. 17. (Yonhap) President Yoon Suk Yeol walks with Emirati leader Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan at a state luncheon held at the United Arab Emirates presidential office on Jan. 17. (Yonhap)

South Korea and the United Arab Emirates have launched formal negotiations for a bilateral free trade agreement, Seoul's industry ministry said Wednesday.

The two nations agreed in 2021 to push for forging a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, and the first round of talks kicked off in Seoul on Monday for a four-day run, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

The CEPA is a type of FTA, which emphasizes a broader scope of economic cooperation and exchanges on top of market opening.

The two sides will narrow differences on a total of eight sectors, including tariffs on goods and services and origin rules, the ministry said.

"The UAE is South Korea's key partner country in the Middle East under 'the special strategic partnership.' The CEPA is expected to further boost bilateral cooperation on trade, new energy industries and a wide range of economic fields," the ministry said in a release. (Yonhap)