Israel to ink free trade deal with S.Korea

Tel Aviv, May 10 (IANS): Israel and South Korea will sign a free trade agreement this week, officials said here.

The deal, the first of its kind Israel will have with an Asian country, is expected to be signed in eoul during a two-day visit by Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi and Economy and Industry Minister Amir Peretz, Xinhua news agency quoted a joint statement issued by their offices on Sunday as saying.

Under the deal, imported product from Israel and South Korea will be exempt from duty in both countries.

The deal "is expected to significantly increase mutual trade between Israel and Korea" ,said the statement.

Israel hopes that the arrangement will give the Israeli industry "a competitive advantage and facilitate the activity of businessmen in the Korean market".

Ashkenazi said the deal is expected to help reduce Israel's high living cost by lowering import costs from ROK to Israel.

Peretz said Israel is in negotiations on new free trade agreements with China, Vietnam and the Eurasian Economic Union which includes Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Belarus.



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