South Korea and the United Arab Emirates concluded talks for a bilateral trade deal on Saturday, October 14,2023. The bilateral trade deal, known as a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement ( CEPA ), was finalised on Saturday, as per the information provided by both countries.
The CEPA between South Korea and UAE :
According to a statement, investment and trade links between the Gulf state of United Arab Emirates and South Korea have been improving regularly. The bilateral non – oil commerce of both countries reached $3 billion in the first six months of the year 2023, – which is actually equivalent to the same period of it last year, but also with a 21% increase in comparison to the year 2021.
Additionally, a consortium of Korean enterprises and the Korea Electric Power Corporation built all four units of the Barakah Power Plant in Abu Dhabi – which is a 20$ billion nuclear power plant in the UAE. The power plant went into service in April of this year in order to satisfy the domestic electricity demands of the Gulf state.
In the year 2021, South Korea was also among the first countries with which the United Arab Emirates launched talks for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement ( CEPA ). However, three months later, the Asian state also revived the talks of the Free Trade Agreement ( FTA ) with the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council Bloc, of which the United Arab Emirates is also a member.
The United Arab Emirates’ Minister of Foreign Trade, Thani Al Zeyoudi, stated to Reuters that the two countries of UAE and South Korea had resumed their talks earlier this year and that they were both keen and eager to conclude a deal and advance their respective economic agendas. He also added that the Gulf Cooperation Council FTA talks also remained ongoing.
As a part of the country’s strategy to diversify and expand its economy from oil, so far, the United Arab Emirates has signed numerous CEPAs, including with previous political foes like Israel and Turkey, and also with Asian giants like India and Indonesia.