(Around 1,700 German companies are based in Singapore)
But why should the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement enter into force quickly?
The fact is:
Singapore is considered the lead market and the most important market for German companies in the ASEAN region.
In 2017, the bilateral trade volume between Germany and Singapore amounted to 13.4 billion euros.
Machinery, chemical products and electrical engineering were the most important German exports to Singapore, while chemical products, electronics and measurement/control technology accounted for the most important imports from Singapore.
With the help of the agreement, the EU expects exports to increase by 1.4 billion euros within the next ten years, and real gross domestic product to increase by 550 million euros.
German industry can benefit from the implementation of the EUSFHA as described below:
1. Improved market access for goods
It is important for German companies that the reduction of non-tariff trade barriers is tackled within the framework of the EUSFHA. This applies in particular to the following sectors: Automotive and automotive parts, electronics, pharmaceuticals and environmental technologies.
Currently, more than 99% of all products can be exported duty-free to Singapore. When the agreement comes into force, Singapore will also abolish the remaining tariffs.
2. Improved market access for all services
The EUSFHA will result in Singapore largely liberalising the services sector in the three main modes of supply (cross-border supplies, foreign consumption at home and trading branches abroad). Particularly noteworthy is the mutual waiver of licensing requirements for market entry. The EUSFHA is therefore of particular interest to German companies in the fields of telecommunications, engineering services, maritime transport, environmental and postal services.
3. Improved access to the public procurement market
Singapore’s public procurement market accounts for around ten percent of the gross domestic product. Since Singapore joined the WTO Agreement on Public Procurement, European companies have already successfully bid in Singapore’s public procurement procedures.
European companies are allowed to bid at new public institutions, such as Singapore’s Energy Market Authority.
The free trade agreement will open up new market opportunities for German companies.
4. Improved protection of intellectual Property
An important part of the agreement covers the protection of geographical indications.
196 indications of origin, including “Bayrisches Bier”, “Schwarzwälder Schinken” and “Aachener Printen”, will thus enjoy a higher level of protection.
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