Fiji has signed several bilateral trade agreements with various countries and is working to renew expired trade agreements as well as form new trade agreements. Fiji has also signed up to several regional trade agreements, namely the Pacific Island Countries Trade Agreement (PICTA), the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER), the South Pacific Regional Trade and Economic Agreement (SPARTECA) and the Melanesian Spearhead Group Trade Agreement (MSGTA) and the Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA).
PICTA is a free trade agreement between the 14 Forum Island Countries (FIC). The agreement was signed in 2001, Fiji ratified it in 2002 and it came into force in 2006. The trade agreement aims to eliminate trade barriers, both tariff and non-tariff barriers and promote trade with fair competition and hence expansion of world trade. Furthermore, the agreement works to promote cooperation, commercially, industrially, agriculturally and technical cooperation among Forum Island Countries taking the view of the eventual creation of a single regional market.
For more information on goods traded under PICTA:
PACER was signed in 2001 and aims to create a single regional economy. PACER works to increase opportunities and competitiveness, to promote economic and technical assistance between nations and to also minimize effects and costs. Furthermore, the agreement also works to ensure compliance with WTO standards.
SPARTECA is a regional trade agreement between Australia, New Zealand and countries of the South Pacific Forum signed in 1981. The agreement aims to address the unequal trade relationship between Australia and New Zealand and Forum Island Countries (FIC). The agreement progressively allows duty free and unrestricted access to Australia and New Zealand markets, with as many products as possible. The agreement therefore works to foster greater penetration of exports from FICs into Australia and New Zealand markets. The main beneficiary from this agreement has been the textile, clothing and footwear industry as exports into Australia and New Zealand markets has grown over the past 10 years.
For more information on goods traded under SPARTECA:
The Melanesian Spearhead Group Trade Agreement (MSGTA) came into effect in 1993 with Fiji signing up to the agreement in 1998. The agreement aims to promote regional integration through the facilitation of a free flow of goods and services and the removal of trade barriers. Furthermore, the agreement promotes and monitors trade under fair competition hence contributing to the expansion of world trade. In the long run, the agreement works to facilitate, stabilize, consolidate and diversify trade among signatories.
For more information on goods traded under MSGTA:
Fiji entered into an Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) with the European Community in 2009 with the expiration of the Cotonou Agreement in 2007. The IEPA is now active while the terms of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between PACP and the European Community are being negotiated. The IEPA protects Fiji’s sugar exports to the European Community while the negotiations are being carried out.
For more information please refer to the following websites:
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