The President of Panama, Ricardo Martinelli met with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and discussed the lifting of tariff measures on the import of apparel from the Colon Free Zones (CFZs), a free trade zone in the port of Colon, Panama.
According to a statement issued by the Presidency of the Republic of Panama, both the leaders discussed reviewing the issue of extraordinary tariff collection that applies on Panama’s exports of apparel from the CFZs.
This was among the several topics discussed between the Presidents of the two countries during the official visit of the President of Panama, in Cartagena, Colombia.
According to the statement, the Colombian President announced a review on the special duty of US$ 5 per kilo charged on the imports of apparel from CFZs.
President Santos said Panama meets with the standards required by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
In March 2013, Colombia had imposed an additional five dollars per kilo duty on apparel imported from other countries, including Panama, irrespective of the price of the imported product, while reducing the tariff on textiles and apparels from 15 to 10 percent.
The duty affects apparel exporters from Panama’s CFZs, and exporters had voiced their opposition even during the talks for Colombia-Panama Free Trade Agreement, the negotiations of which ended in June, 2013.