South Korea’s National Assembly has ratified a free trade accord with Israel, and it will take effect on December 1.

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid welcomed the news on Twitter.

“Great news: the first-ever free trade agreement between Israel and a country in Asia has been ratified,” said Lapid. “This agreement will create new opportunities & help lower the cost of living in both our nations.”

Under the agreement, signed in May 2021, there will be mutual reductions in customs charges on goods and measures to facilitate trade in other areas such as services and investment, and mutually agreed-upon standards, reported the Israeli business daily Globes. Among other things, the 7 percent levy on South Korean automobile imports will be eliminated.

More than 95% of Israeli exports to South Korea will be duty free.

Trade between the countries was worth approximately $3.5 billion in 2021, up 35 percent from the previous year.


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