New opportunities for workers, producers, farmers and ranchers: more than 80% of U.S. exports of consumer goods and industrial products to Colombia were released after entry into force and the remaining tariffs were controlled over a ten-year period. U.S. products that have received immediate duty-free access include agricultural and construction equipment, aircraft and parts, auto parts, fertilizers and agrochemicals, computer equipment, medical and scientific equipment, and wood. More than half of U.S. agricultural exports became free when it came into force, with most of the remaining tariffs expiring over 15 years. Colombia has abolished tariffs on wheat, barley, soybeans, soy flour and flour, high quality beef, bacon, almost all fruits and vegetables, peanuts, whey, cotton and the vast majority of processed products. The TPA also provides duty-free access to certain quantities of standard beef, chicken-legged quarters, pork, corn, sorghum, feed, rice, soybean oil and dairy products through tariff quotas. Find out more here. Labour rights protection obligations: the TPA obliges the two contracting parties to adopt and maintain in their laws the five fundamental labour rights contained in the 1998 ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and the Right to Work.
Both parties are also obliged – and should not repeal – to effectively enforce labour legislation with regard to fundamental labour rights. All labour chapter obligations are subject to the same dispute resolution procedures and enforcement mechanisms as the VPA`s trade obligations. In addition, the governments of the United States and Colombia have also agreed to take concrete steps to address long-standing problems of mutual concerns, including violence against Colombian union members and insufficient efforts to bring perpetrators to justice and inadequate protection of workers` rights. Since then, Colombia has made significant progress in strengthening protection of workers` rights, hiring hundreds of new labour inspectors to expand enforcement of labour laws, recruit and train police and law enforcement to focus on cases of violence against trade unionists and take enforcement action to combat abusive third-party contracts. , including the assessment of large fines against offenders.