MANILA – The Philippines and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are continuing talks towards a free trade agreement, with both sides reaffirming their commitment to boosting trade and investment between the two countries.
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said on Tuesday that Commerce Secretary Alfredo Pascual met with UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi on the sidelines of the 23rd meeting of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Council in Jakarta on 3 September.
“During the meeting, both parties recognized the need to further strengthen bilateral trade, investment and economic cooperation between the Philippines and the UAE,” the DTI said in a statement, citing that the agreement Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEPA) and the implementation of the Investment Promotion and Investment Agreement. (IPPA) were discussed.
“In addition, the two trade ministers discussed the possibility of investing and cooperating in areas such as renewable energy, research and development and skills development,” the government agency added.
Earlier last month, Commerce Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo told reporters that Cepa’s terms of reference had already been completed and that they planned to meet later this year to advance discussions. .
Rodolfo said the United Arab Emirates, a country in the Middle East, is a good market for Filipino halal-related products, tropical fruits, clothing, as well as high-end finished consumer goods like luxury watches, belts and other leather products.
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