Colombian products with 0% tariff

  • 99% of Colombian qualifying industrial and textile goods will become duty free upon the implementation of the FTA.
  • 89% of Colombian agricultural goods will become duty free upon implementation of the FTA.
  • Duties on many other tariff lines will be phased out over a period of up to 15 years, with some agricultural tariff rate quotas. While Colombia is expected to fill its new sugar TRQ, the FTA is likely to have a minor effect on U.S. imports and production of sugar and sugar containing products.
Key facts

Key facts

  1. The Colombia- U.S. FTA promotes trade in goods by eliminating tariff barriers, and by promoting the harmonization of technical regulations between both parties. As a result, FTA supports economic growth in both countries.

  2. The FTA supports American jobs and improves American competitiveness since many American businesses use imports under this program as inputs to manufacture goods in the United States.

  3. It is expected that the agreement will be effective in the second half of 2012, once Colombia accomplish all the agreement laws, regulations and policies.  USTR is helping to accomplish these requirements as quickly as possible.

  4. Colombia’s government is ensuring labor laws by promoting more protection rights for workers, to please and accomplish the strategic goals of the bilateral Labor Action Plan.

  5. The USTR General Counsel, Tim Reif said that the FTA with Colombia is “well on the road” and is likely to be the next FTA to see implementation -GBD event on the pending FTAs.

  6. United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk said “USTR has already started the work necessary to bring these agreements into force as soon as possible”- September 2011. 

  7. Colombia asked assistance in its labor to upgrade its workers rights from both the International Labor Organization and U.S. government.  Mr. Kirk said:“It feels like they are absolutely meeting both the letter and spirit of what we asked them to do”.

Colombian products with 0% tariff


The approval of the FTA extends the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act, ATPDEA, which was renewed until July 2013. The tariff preferences that many Colombian products have had shall be maintained with the FTA and therefore, sectors such as flowers, apparel, tobacco, cocoa, plastics and leather manufacturing, among others, shall be benefited.

In fact, both the ATPDEA preferences as well as the others that were agreed upon, shall be maintained over time, given that their persistence shall not be subject to unilateral U.S. Government and Congress decisions.


Agreements texts

The FTA is an agreement that generates opportunities for all Colombians, as it contributes to the creation of quality jobs and the improvement of the national economy’s performance. It benefits the exports sector, which will be able to sell its products and services under favorable conditions in the U.S. market.

The subjects that were negotiated were market access, in its two aspects (industrial and agricultural), intellectual property, investment regime, Government acquisitions, conflict resolution, competency, e-trade, services, environment and labor, among others.

The text of the agreement is embodied in one preamble and 23 chapters. The chapters cover aspects that reflect the general agreed-upon disciplines, many of which are common in multilateral and bilateral negotiations, and incorporate particular elements obtained by Colombia as well as by the United States in the negotiation.

For more details on the agreement, visit the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Tourism website at:


FAQs about TLC

The second tunnel of the Line is also planned, which will require more investment to complete the Arterial Corridor for Competitiveness.

Most of the items come from the disposal of 10% of Ecopetrol, which is expected to rise to about $ 15 billion. Another component of the funds will come from royalties, the national budget, and resources of Findeter.

Colombia currently has 850 kilometers of divided highways and aims to reach 2,000 km in four years. It is an urgent need to build a true road network that consists essentially of trunks that connect the country.

We have been working on many other issues, such as making changes so that service exporters do not have to pay VAT, as well as creating incentives for investment in the hospitality sector.

Trade agreements are structural measures that do not depend on the various joints. Therefore, a deceleration of the U.S. economy would not affect the FTA. The fact is that this FTA is a golden opportunity for Colombia, given that we maintain the higher levels of trade with the U.S. than the other countries of South America.

The FTA will enhance U.S. trade with our country. Some analysts say that in a scenario with the FTA, there would be a trade increase of 40.5%, whereas without the FTA and without the tariff preferences that have governed since 1991, the decline of bilateral trade would reach 57.6%.

Much of Mexico's sustained growth over the past 16 years has been related to the implementation of its FTA with the U.S. And something similar to this also happened to Peru, Chile, and Central America. In general, countries of this region that have signed FTAs with the U.S. have reported a 25% increase in exports during the first year of their FTAs.

There are two effects: one is the immediate extension of ATPDEA tariff preferences, which is a relief of hundreds of millions of dollars for our exporters of clothing, food, and flowers, among others. Another effect is for the medium term, there all the calculations and projections can be realized if a good combination of policies is made for the use of the FTA. Only textiles and clothing can triple its exports to the U.S. market over the next three years. There are other key sectors of Colombian industry will grow at an accelerated rate, because there will be more business opportunities, including those for services as well.

On this point, we also welcome the calculations of other entities, in this case, the Corporation for Economic Development Research and Teaching (CIDE), which estimates an increase of over 19% in foreign investment, once the FTA is in force. It is worth remembering that last year, we reached a new record for investment, so we expect to continue this positive trend.

There are many models and calculations that indicate that FTA will have a positive effect on the growth of the Colombian economy. Some estimates are between 0.5% and 1% of GDP. But after five years with the FTA, Colombia's economy is expected to grow by an additional point- Meanwhile, unemployment is expected to fall by two points.