Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce of Thailand, attended the launching ceremony for the Free Trade negotiations between Thailand and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA)

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce of Thailand, attended the launching ceremony for the Free Trade negotiations between Thailand and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA)

วันที่นำเข้าข้อมูล 24 Jun 2022

วันที่ปรับปรุงข้อมูล 24 Jun 2022

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On 20 June 2022, H.E. Mr. Jurin Laksanawisit, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce of Thailand, attended the launching ceremony for the Free Trade negotiations between Thailand and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) with the Ministers from the four EFTA member countries, namely Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.  From the Thai side, Mr. Boonyarit Kalayanamit, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce, Ms. Vimolbajra Ruksakiati, Ambassador of Thailand to Norway, and Mrs. Auramon Supthaweethum, Director General, Department of Trade Negotiations, Ministry of Commerce also participated.

In his remarks, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce of Thailand stated that this is a historic day for Thai trade since it marks the beginning of the trade negotiation between Thailand and EFTA.  At present, Thailand has 14 FTA agreements with 18 countries, with the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) as the largest FTA comprising 15 member countries. This year, Thailand will host APEC 2022 and has recently hosted a meeting for Ministers responsible for Trade (MRT) from 21 member economies. The meeting was very fruitful as the participants expressed their intentions to transform the existing trade cooperation into the free trade agreement.

When concluded, the FTA between Thailand and EFTA will be Thailand’s first FTA agreement with European countries and the 15th FTA agreement of Thailand, resulting in the total of 22 countries which Thailand has FTA with.  The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce expressed hope that this FTA will cover many areas, including trade in goods and services, investment, trade facilitation, taxes deduction, e-commerce, environment, and other fields of interests of EFTA.  During 28-30 June 2022, Thailand will host the Senior Official meeting (SOM) with EFTA in Bangkok, just one week after today’s launching ceremony.  Thailand aims for the FTA negotiation with EFTA to be concluded within 2 years.

After the launching ceremony, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce of Thailand informed members of the media that the trade volume between Thailand and EFTA was about 7,500 million USD last year.  It is hoped that after the Thai-EFTA FTA enters into force, the trade volume will double in a short time, for the benefit of the people in all five member countries.

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