Business / Economy

Analysts say Sino-Swiss free trade deal to foster trade ties

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-07-04 15:24

GENEVA - With the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) entered into force on Tuesday, China and Switzerland have established a preferential trade relationship for goods and services.

Swiss officials and experts say the FTA will foster the win-win trade and economic exchange within the two sides.

The FTA, signed in Beijing on July 6, 2013, after nine rounds of negotiations of more than two years, is the first free trade pact inked between China and a country in continental Europe.

According to the FTA, as much as 99.7 percent of Chinese exports to Switzerland will be immediately exempted from tariffs, while 84.2 percent of Swiss exports to China will eventually receive zero tariffs.

From a Swiss perspective, the FTA enables a competitive advantage compared to countries which have not a FTA with China.

Noting that the vast majority of industrial and agricultural goods exported from Switzerland to China will enjoy tariff concession, either some with immediate effect or some after a period of transition, Swiss Federal Councilor Johann Schneider-Ammann on Tuesday said, "This means that Swiss products will become considerably more competitive over the short and medium term."

"If you ask what shall be the positive effects out of it, naturally, it is trade, and trade development on both sides," he added.

He said, "Switzerland is, honestly speaking, a very tiny market. We look for the huge Chinese market, but on the other side, China will find in Switzerland partners on a top technology level and innovation level."

Meanwhile, in terms of services and the protection of intellectual property under the FTA, he said it will improve the legal certainty and therefore the ability to plan, which will cut costs for Swiss businesses and open up new opportunities.

Analysts say Sino-Swiss free trade deal to foster trade ties

Analysts say Sino-Swiss free trade deal to foster trade ties

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