Israel and South Korea to Sign Free Trade Pact

The deal is meant to bolster bilateral trade by cutting out customs duties and offering safety nets on investments

Reuters
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Currency traders watch monitors at the foreign exchange dealing room in Seoul, South Korea, last week.
Currency traders watch monitors at the foreign exchange dealing room in Seoul, South Korea, last week.Credit: Ahn Young-joon,AP
Reuters

Israel will sign a free trade agreement with South Korea this week, marking the first such arrangement with an Asian market, Israel's economy ministry said on Sunday.

The deal is meant to bolster bilateral trade by cutting out customs duties and offering safety nets on investments. Bilateral trade reached about $2.4 billion in 2020, about two thirds of its goods and services imported into Israel, the ministry said.

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The deal will be signed this week in Seoul during a visit by Israel's foreign affairs and economy ministers.

Israel and South Korea completed negotiations in 2019, yet the deal would not apply to East Jerusalem, the West Bank or the Golan Heights, areas beyond the country's 1967 borders.

More than 95 percent of Israeli exports to South Korea will be customs-free, the ministry said. Israel is working on similar deals with China, Vietnam and India, it added.

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