Trade negotiations with EFTA set to boost Thai GDP


The Trade Negotiations Department of the Commerce Ministry gears up for the seventh round of trade negotiations with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), to seal the deal by mid-2024. The announcement was made by Auramon Supthaweethum, the director-general of the department, who confirmed that the negotiations will take place from November 6 to November 9 in Geneva, Switzerland.

The EFTA consists of four countries, namely Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein. This round of talks will cover several key areas across nine sub-groups including trade in goods, rules of origin of goods, trade remedy measures, and e-commerce amongst others. Additionally, intellectual property and legal issues, as well as dispute settlement, will also be discussed in two more sub-group meetings scheduled in mid-November and early December.

According to initial studies conducted by the ministry, the establishment of a free trade agreement between Thailand and EFTA could potentially boost the Thai GDP by 0.179%, which is roughly equivalent to US$886 million. Additionally, exports are expected to see a rise of 0.142%, approximately US$405 million, while imports may increase by 0.224%, around US$615 million.

The proposed trade negotiations agreement is expected to bring about benefits for several Thai agricultural and food products. These include but are not limited to rice, maize, processed food, pet food, tropical fruit, flour, vegetable oil, processed chicken, sugar, noodles, canned fruit and vegetables, and fruit juices.

Trade negotiations with EFTA set to boost Thai GDP | News by Thaiger
Thailand convened their sixth round of free trade negotiations with the EFTA delegation in September this year. This discussion covered a wide range of areas such as trade in goods, trade remedies, sustainable development, sanitary measures, etc… to successfully conclude the negotiations by next year. Photo by

Also, industrial products such as clothing, automobiles and auto parts, precious stones and jewellery, along with service sectors like tourism, finance, telecom, healthcare, clean energy and professional services are expected to benefit, reported Bangkok Post.

The trade negotiations between Thailand and EFTA from January to September totalled US$7.03 billion, with exports adding up to US$3.24 billion and imports amounting to US$3.79 billion.

Key exports to EFTA from Thailand include precious stones and jewellery, watches and components, iron, air conditioners and parts, travel appliances and automobiles. On the other hand, imports from EFTA to Thailand mainly consisted of diamonds, pearls, gold and silver, watches and components, and animal meat.

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Alex Morgan

Alex is a 42-year-old former corporate executive and business consultant with a degree in business administration. Boasting over 15 years of experience working in various industries, including technology, finance, and marketing, Alex has acquired in-depth knowledge about business strategies, management principles, and market trends. In recent years, Alex has transitioned into writing business articles and providing expert commentary on business-related issues. Fluent in English and proficient in data analysis, Alex strives to deliver well-researched and insightful content to readers, combining practical experience with a keen analytical eye to offer valuable perspectives on the ever-evolving business landscape.

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