China's Commerce Minister Wang Wentao and Honduran Economic Development Minister Fredy Cerrato on Wednesday signed an early harvest arrangement for a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) via video link, an important step forward for both countries.
The two sides agreed to commence respective domestic procedures to bring the early harvest arrangement into force. Meanwhile, the officials from China and Honduras pledged to accelerate the negotiations and strive for their conclusion as soon as possible, said China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM).
Since July 2023, China and Honduras have carried out three rounds of FTA negotiations, and the latest in December 2023 completed negotiations for an early harvest arrangement, according to MOFCOM.
MOFCOM said that the signing of the early harvest arrangement will benefit people and enterprises from China and Honduras. It will also accelerate bilateral negotiations toward an FTA, and further promote the bilateral economic and trade relationship.
China and Honduras established diplomatic relations in March 2023. The total bilateral trade volume reached $1.91 billion last year, up 21.1 percent from 2022, data from China's General Administration of Customs (GAC) showed.
The GAC allowed imports of multiple Honduran products in June 2023, including fresh bananas, coffee beans and aquatic products, which lifted Honduras' exports to China to $81.17 million in 2023, up 177.6% year-on-year.