LA Topic: POLITICAL AND CO-OPERATION ACCORD BETWEEN THE EUROPEAN UNION AND ITS MEMBER STATES AND THE ANDEAN COMMUNITY AND ITS MEMBER STATES

E-commerce entrepreneurs should carefully review regional and free trade agreements among the nations to detect opportunities that may help them, or their customers, reduce their import/export costs, taxation burdens and custom proceedings when shipping goods overseas. Customs, duties, intellectual property, data protection, consumer rights, and import/export issues are relevant issues to e-commerce. These issues are also commonly addressed in regional, free trade and economic agreements between nations. Therefore, regional agreements provide useful legal information to e-commerce entrepreneurs and their customers. The Andean Community (AC) is a free trade agreement signed by Colombia, Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. It is the second major South American free trade agreement after Mercosur. The Andean Community and its member states signed a political and co-operation accord with the European Union (EU) and its member states on October 2003. The accord is the foundation of a possible future free trade agreement between the EU and the AC. Through politic talks and co-operation, the parties to this accord purport to develop areas relevant to their future economic alliance. For instance, the accord covers areas such as foreign policy and security; human rights and democracy; prevention of conflicts between the nations involved; commercial co-operation; services; intellectual property issues; public contracts; customs; agricultural and forest development; fishing industry; mining and energy sector; transportation, financial services; tourism; foreign investment; environment and biodiversity; health, terrorism; etc. Additionally, the accord addresses six major topics relevant to e-commerce transactions.

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