The CAFTA countries and many other developing countries already enjoy duty free access to the U.S. market for the majority of their exports through trade preference programs provided by Congress to promote economic development. Yet these countries often have high tariff and non-tariff barriers for U.S. exports and impose restrictions on U.S. businesses. State-of-the-art free trade agreements like the CAFTA not only reduce barriers to U.S. trade, but also require important reforms of the domestic legal and business environment that are key to encouraging business development and investment.
The Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) entered into force for the United States, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua in 2006, for the Dominican Republic in 2007, and for Costa Rica in 2009. As a result of the FTA, 100 percent of U.S. consumer and industrial goods exports to the CAFTA-DR countries will no longer be subject to tariffs by 2015. Tariffs on nearly all U.S. agricultural products will be phased out by 2020. To be eligible for tariff-free treatment under the FTA, products must meet the relevant rules of origin.
Learn more about CAFTA-DR
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