Government Affairs — President Obama Submits Colombia, Korea and Panama Trade Agreements to Congress

On October 3, President Obama submitted the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) between the U.S. and Colombia, Korea and Panama to Congress. It is anticipated that leaders will aim to pass the Korea pact by mid-October, when the South Korean president visits the U.S.
The Korean duty on shelled and in-shell almonds is currently 8%, but will go to 0% once the FTA is passed by Congress and the specific provisions put into place. The duty on processed almonds is 45% and will be reduced in equal installments over 10 years. Korea was the 12th-largest export market for California Almonds in 2010–11 at 32 million pounds shipped.
Colombia’s duty on shelled and in-shell almonds is 15%. The duty on processed almonds is 20%. All duties will be eliminated once the trade agreement goes into effect. Panama’s duties on almonds are much lower and will also be eliminated upon implementation of the trade pact. Panama’s duties are shelled 2%, in-shell 10% and zero for processed almonds. ABC will continue to follow the progress of these trade pacts and will report back on the effective implementation dates.