Singapore Free Trade Agreements is one of the fundamental reasons this country has stronger ties and connections around the world. It strengthens the economy while ensuring that the citizens benefit from a bilateral treaty that reduces the costs for practically everyone.

Whether you’re a citizen in Singapore buying some oranges in your favourite grocery store or purchasing that expensive facial wash from US, acknowledging the existence of these trade agreements helps us understand Singapore’s position as a central hub for all kinds of businesses.

What is Free Trade Agreement (FTA)?

Overhead photos of shipment containers.

Trade is one of the ways countries earn revenue while it is not without challenges.

We’ve written an in-depth article about FTAs, but in essence, FTAs seek to reduce cost for everyone, streamline and protect businesses. Some of the free trade agreements in Singapore are quite interesting in that it pivots Singapore as the literal heart of trading in South East Asia.

There are also some synonyms with FTAs like Comprehensive Economic Partnership and Economic Partnership Agreement, but they’re basically FTAs under a different title.

Also, Singapore is part the ASEAN group; it’s a collection of South East Asian Countries that have trade agreements with one another. They’re actually pretty similar to the European Union! Here’s the 10 collective countries in this group: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

ASEAN FTA

The flag of the ASEAN group

Because Singapore is part of the ASEAN group, any trade agreements negotiated as a group falls under the ASEAN title. Here’s the current list of FTAs in the ASEAN group:

ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand
ASEAN-China
ASEAN-India
ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership
ASEAN-Korea

Depending on whichever country that negotiated the deal and the logistics behind the negotiations, some countries may export directly to China through another ASEAN country. For example, the Europe-Singapore FTA which will be ratified soon and does involve the ASEAN group, other countries in that group must import their products through Singapore for the FTA to apply.

Other Singapore Free Trade Agreements

Singapore also has FTAs with other countries as well, some of which, interestingly enough, seem like an unlikely pair! For example, did you know that there’s a Panama-Singapore FTA? Or Peru-Singapore FTA! Odd, isn’t it?

Here’s the rest of the FTAs that Singapore currently has!

China-Singapore FTA
Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership
EFTA – Singapore FTA
GCC – Singapore FTA
India-Singapore Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement
Japan-Singapore Economic Partnership Agreement
Korea-Singapore FTA
New Zealand-Singapore Comprehensive Economic Partnership
Panama-Singapore FTA
Peru-Singapore FTA
Singapore-Australia FTA
Singapore-Costa Rica FTA
Singapore-Jordan FTA
Sri Lanka-Singapore FTA
Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership
Turkey-Singapore FTA
United States-Singapore FTA

To sum it up, Singapore’s numerous and pretty extensive list of FTA with such an interesting variety of countries shows Singapore’s strength in negotiating deals. If you’re ever considering to work in such a vibrant place for business, why not see if you have that chance by contacting our consultants?

Author: Rhyn Chan