China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (Csfta) Upgrade Protocol

China is Singapore`s largest trading partner, while Singapore has been China`s largest foreign investor since 2013. In 2018, bilateral trade between Singapore and China reached $135 billion. In 2017, Singapore`s cumulative investment in China was $140 billion, while China`s cumulative investment in Singapore was $36.3 billion. The updated CSFTA offers Singapore companies improved rules of origin that allow more petrochemicals to qualify for preferential treatment. The updated agreement will also allow Singaporean companies to have better access to China`s legal, maritime and construction sectors. Singapore`s Minister of Trade and Industry, Chan Chun Sing, said: “Singapore welcomes the ratification of the Upgrade Protocol of the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement. Upgrading the CSFTA is a substantial, sensible and beneficial agreement for both parties. It will strengthen the base for Singapore and China to deepen our trade and investment relations. The entry into force of the agreement is an important signal for both countries` commitment to free and open trade.” The Upgrading Protocol of the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (CSFTA) entered into force on October 16, 2019. It was officially announced by both sides on October 15 in Chongqing.

The Upgrading Protocol of the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement includes cooperation in six sectors included in the original NAFTA – rules of origin, customs procedures and trade facilitation, trade remedies, trade in services, investment and economic cooperation – and adds three new sectors: e-commerce, competition policy and the environment. With the updated protocol, ASPRI believes it would be a good opportunity for member companies to continue venturing into China. It would also help deepen Singapore`s trade and investment relations with China. The upgrade protocol – which includes the preamble, 8 chapters, 2 annexes and an exchange of letters – adds 3 new chapters: e-commerce, competition policy and the environment. In addition, 6 aspects of the CSFTA, such as rules of origin, customs procedures and trade facilitation, trade aid, trade in services, investment and economic cooperation, will be improved. . . .

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