Business Use of FTAs in Korea

Author Name Inkyo CHEONG  (Inha University) /Hansung KIM  (Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP)) /Jungran CHO  (Inha University)
Creation Date/NO. June 2010 10-E-038
Research Project FTA Study
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This paper reviews the impact of Korea’s FTAs on trade and business, reporting substantial trade growth with FTA partner countries with some exceptions. It also analyzes FTA use by firms, and tries to present the effects of the FTAs on the Korean business firms. According to the paper, Korea’s first four FTAs demonstrate big differences in the utilization rates. In general, the degree of FTA utilization was found to be higher with imports than with exports. Korea-Chile FTA utilization rate for Korean imports reported average of 90.5% for the four years since the FTA was implemented. In the case of Korea-Singapore FTA, Korea-EFTA FTA and Korea-ASEAN FTA, however, the utilization rates were average 29.8%, 42.5%, and 43.3%, respectively. The paper identifies the reasons for poor FTA utilizations in those FTAs, and tries to suggest policy implications for improving FTA utilization by firms.