The EU-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) had been in force on an interim basis since July 2011, before being officially ratified in December 2015. The free trade agreement covers all major areas of trade relations, including trade in goods, trade in services, public procurement, competition and intellectual property. A joint commission is set up to monitor the agreement and a chapter provides for dispute resolution procedures. In addition, EFTA states and Korea have bilateral agreements on basic agricultural products. An investment agreement has been concluded between Korea on the one hand and Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland on the other. South Korea has opposed previous free trade agreements, including with the United States. This EU agreement is bigger than that of the United States. But South Korea`s deputy finance minister Hur Kyung-wook said he believed the agreement would come into force in July 2010. [17] On 22 March 2011, the citizens` group Lawyers for Democratic Society (민사회를 위변호사모임) announced that there were 160 cases of error in the false translation in the Korean version of the document. [18] In 2007, trade between the two parties amounted to 64 billion euros. The EU is the second largest importer of South Korean products.

South Korea is the eighth largest importer of EU products. [6] The agreement is commonly referred to as the first of the next generation of free trade agreements signed by the EU that address trade issues beyond tariffs. These main concerns include non-tariff barriers (NBEN); they are significant barriers to trade in both Korea and the EU. Nb is estimated to have the same level of protection as a tariff of 76% in Korea and 46% in the EU. [8] According to some studies, an agreement could, in the long run, increase trade by 40%. [9] The agreement was the most comprehensive that the EU had negotiated at the time: import duties on all products were virtually abolished and trade in services was profoundly liberal. It contains provisions relating to intellectual property (including geographical indications), public procurement, competition, regulatory transparency and sustainable development. There are also specific obligations against non-tariff barriers in sectors such as automotive, pharmacy and electronics. [4] The agreement established a number of specialized commissions and working groups between the two parties to monitor implementation.