LatinNews Daily - 11 May 2021

In brief: Peru and Nicaragua begin discussions for free trade agreement

* Peru’s foreign trade & tourism minister, Claudia Cornejo, has announced that the governments of Peru and Nicaragua have begun negotiations with the aim of signing an new bialeral free trade agreement (FTA). The first round of discussions are taking place virtually and being held until 18 May. In total there will be 14 months of negotiations, which will include topics such as market access, rules of origin, sanitary measures, services, movement of people, digital trade, investment, and cooperation. Cornejo said that “Latin American markets are an important platform for small- and medium-sized Peruvian businesses to internationalise, and this agreement will enable us to consolidate the presence of Peruvian goods and services in Central American countries”. According to Peru’s foreign trade & tourism ministry (Mincetur), bilateral trade between the two countries in 2020 reached US$32m, with the main exports to Nicaragua being biscuits, explosives, pharmaceutical products, industrial baking equipment, grapes, and plastic goods.