U.S./Korea trade agreement takes effect March 15
United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk announced the U.S.-Korea trade agreement will take effect on March 15. U.S. and Korean officials confirmed they had completed applicable legal requirements and procedures for the agreement’s implementation.
On March 15, almost 80% of U.S. exports of industrial products to Korea will become duty-free, including aerospace equipment, agricultural equipment, auto parts, building products, chemicals, consumer goods, electrical equipment, environmental goods, all footwear and travel goods, paper products, scientific equipment and shipping and transportation equipment.
Also on March 15, almost two-thirds of U.S. exports of agricultural products to Korea will become duty-free, including wheat, corn, soybeans for crushing, whey for feed use, hides and skins, cotton, cherries, pistachios, almonds, orange juice, grape juice and wine.
The KORUS pact will phase out tariffs on U.S. beef over the next 15 years.
The agreement also includes a number of significant commitments related to non-tariff measures that will also come into force on March 15, including obligations related to motor vehicle safety and environmental standards, enhanced regulatory transparency, standard-setting, technology neutrality, and customs administration. Strengthened protections for intellectual property rights benefiting American creators and innovators will also come into force on that day. Finally, commitments opening up Korea’s $580 billion services market will also be in effect beginning March 15.