In June 2013, the EU and Egypt started discussions on how to deepen their trade and investment relations through a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (CFTA). The Parties shall endeavour to progressively liberalize and open their markets to each other`s trade in services, in accordance with the provisions of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) (Articles 26 and 27). Originally, the system was based on a network of free trade agreements with individual origin protocols. The specific protocols on origin are replaced by a reference to the Regional Convention on Pan-Euro-Mediterranean (MSP) Preferential Rules of Origin, established in 2011 to create a more uniform framework for protocols on origin. As regards EFTA-Egypt trade statistics, see EFTA Trade Statistics Instrument Agreements between economic operators of the Contracting Parties and abuse of a dominant position by economic operators of the Parties are incompatible with the Agreement where they affect trade between the EFTA States and Egypt (Article 31). Egypt is a signatory to several multilateral trade agreements: the main objective of the agreement (objectives, Article 1) is the liberalization of trade in goods, in accordance with Article XXIV of the GATT in 1994. By January 1, 2020, tariffs on almost all industrial products will be eliminated. Meanwhile, the US has negotiated an agreement between Egypt and Israel to establish a “skilled industrial zone” between the two countries, which has angered both Egyptians and their Arab neighbors. In 2009, U.S. and Egyptian trade officials under the Obama administration signed a strategic partnership plan that committed to “a program of enhanced cooperation between the United States and Egypt on economic, trade, and investment issues.” However, there have been no substantial steps towards a bilateral free trade agreement between the two countries. Describes the bilateral and multilateral trade agreements in which this country participates, including with the United States.

The EU-Egypt Association Agreement has been in force since 2004. It creates a free trade area between the EU and Egypt by abolishing tariffs on industrial products and facilitating trade in agricultural products. Trade in processed agricultural products is included in a Protocol to the Main Agreement (Article 4(b) and Protocol A). In addition, trade in agricultural commodities is covered by three bilateral agreements negotiated separately between Iceland (Agricultural Agreement between Iceland and Egypt), Norway (Agricultural Agreement between Norway and Egypt) and Switzerland/Liechtenstein (Agricultural Agreement between Switzerland and Egypt), of the one part, and Egypt, of the other part. These agreements, which are part of the instruments for the creation of the free trade area (Article 4(d)), provide for tariff concessions. In addition, Egypt has signed several bilateral agreements with Arab countries: Jordan (December 1999), Lebanon (March 1999), Libya (January 1991), Morocco (April 1999), Syria (December 1991) and Tunisia (March 1999). In addition, Egypt and China concluded a trade agreement in 1995. Egypt has also signed an economic agreement with Russia. In June 2001, Egypt signed an Association Agreement with the European Union (EU), which was signed on 1 June 2004.

The agreement provided for immediate duty-free access for Egyptian products to EU markets, while duty-free access for EU products was progressive over a twelve-year period. In 2010, Egypt and the EU concluded an agricultural annex to their free trade agreement and liberalized trade in more than 90% of agricultural products. In June 2013, the EU and Egypt started discussions on a Comprehensive and Deep Free Trade Agreement. Negotiations on trade in services are currently frozen. The Agreement applies to trade in fish and other seafood products (Article 4(c) and Annex II). The EFTA States grant duty-free access to imports of all Egyptian fishery products. As regards EFTA exports to Egypt, the Agreement provides for the reduction of customs duties under the quotas from the entry into force of the Agreement. . . .