FTA with China to bolster honduran exports

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

China has taken steps to boost exports from Honduras, facilitating duty-free access to shrimp and certifying five new coffee companies, bringing the total number to 17. These steps are part of the active negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the two countries. The FTA, if approved, will eliminate tariff and non-tariff barriers, presenting new opportunities for Honduran exports. This initiative takes on greater relevance in the context of the exponential growth of trade relations between China and Honduras since China’s accession to the World Trade Organization in 2001.

The Honduran government is optimistic about the possibility of accessing China’s vast market of more than 1.4 billion consumers. In order to facilitate these trade exchanges, the National Agri-Food Health and Safety Service (Senasa) has been actively working to streamline technical processes related to product exports, with a special focus on coffee, an emblematic product for Honduras.

In addition, the recent signing of a tariff-free shrimp export agreement between China’s trade minister, Wang Wentao, and the Honduran Minister of Economic Development, Fredys Cerrato, is expected to expedite the possible FTA between the two countries. This deal, known as the Early Harvest agreement, demonstrates a commitment to facilitate bilateral trade. The reestablishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in March 2023 has also been an important catalyst for these initiatives to strengthen trade ties.

In terms of figures, there is a noticeable increase in Honduran imports of Chinese products, reaching around $2.2 billion in the last year, compared to the $23.5 million recorded in 2021. This increase highlights the importance of the evolving trade relationship between the two countries.

Recent actions not only aim to consolidate Sino-Honduran trade relations, but also lay a solid foundation for the future Free Trade Agreement, providing Honduras with significant opportunities in the dynamic Chinese market.