Oil Palm Industry Economic Journal Vol. 11 (2) September 2011 p. 26-35

Free Trade Agreement – The Way Forward for the Malaysian Palm Oil Industry

N Balu and Nazlin Ismail
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Free Trade Agreements (FTA) have gained prominence in recent years arising from the long delayed conclusion of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Agriculture and Non-agriculture Negotiations (NAMA). However, member countries of the WTO are keen on fostering greater trade liberalisation with their major trading partners, either bilaterally or regionally to enhance greater market access opportunities. In this context, although Malaysia is a late starter to FTA, it has picked up rather aggressively of late. Malaysia thus far has been involved in the successful completion of five bilateral and regional FTA respectively, both of which have proven to a large extent increased trade dealings and the removal or reductions of trade impediments, especially high tariffs, coupled with increased market access opportunities through flexible rules of origin (ROO). This article will attempt to provide the importance of FTA, features of FTA and the involvement of Malaysia in FTA, both concluded and currently under negotiations.

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