The CARICOM – Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement was signed on August 22, 1998. It grants Trinidad and Tobago’s exporters access to more than eight million consumers in the Dominican Republic market. This agreement eliminates border taxes on all goods imported from and exported to the Dominican Republic other than those specifically listed or deemed economically sensitive.

In addition to goods, the agreement provides for future negotiation of access for Trinidad and Tobago’s service providers to sell services in the Dominican Republic in the following sectors:

  • Tourism and entertainment;
  • Free Trade Zones / Export Processing Zones Services;
  • Financial Services;
  • Professional Services (e.g. medical, legal, accounting and engineering);
  • Design;
  • Construction (skilled workers);
  • Informatics;
  • Telecommunications;

The Agreement also provides business persons, with temporary entry to the Dominican Republic if they are seeking to establish, develop, administer or provide key advisory or technical services, as well as, persons employed by a company seeking to perform managerial or executive functions in the Dominican Republic.

The Agreement also addresses a major deterrent faced by investors wishing to do business in the Dominican Republic, namely Distributor Law 173. This Dominican Republic law states that if a company is desirous of changing his representative, costs related to sales for the last five years must be taken into account along with product promotion in the market. The CARICOM-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement Annex IV – Article 4 – of the Protocol Implementing the Agreement – Application of Dominican Republic Law 173, however, states that if companies agree to exclude Law 173 from a contract involving goods, the Law will not be applicable.

For further information please contact the Ministry of Trade and Industry at or call 623-2932.


The CARICOM-Venezuela Trade and Investment Agreement is a one-way preferential agreement, which aims to promote CARICOM exports to Venezuela. Venezuela is the sixth most populous nation in Latin America with 28 million people.

Tariffs have been eliminated on a selected list of products such as fresh produce, confectionery, cosmetics, jams and jellies, medicines, wooden furniture, horticultural products, spices, processed foods and toilet preparations, while many other products enjoy some measure of tariff reduction. Exceptions to these items include beef, milk products, coffee, rice, some oils and other selected goods. The Agreement also seeks to foster investment in the region and to facilitate joint ventures between both parties.

Venezuela will grant products originating in Trinidad and Tobago free access to its market through tariff reduction and the elimination of non-tariff barriers. This includes immediate duty free access on specific products and phased reduction of duties on other selected goods. Trade in services is considered significant to the development of all parties’ economies. Co-operation will be developed to advance trade in services.

For further information please contact the Ministry of Trade and Industry at or call 623-2932.


The CARICOM/Colombia Trade, Economic and Technical Co-operation Agreement provides for two-way trade liberalisation and trade facilitation between Trinidad and Tobago and Colombia. Colombia is the fifth largest economy in Latin America with the third largest population of some 46 million people.

Trinidad and Tobago’s products have free access to Colombia’s market through the elimination of tariffs and non-tariff barriers for products specified under the agreement.

Trade in services has been recognised as significant for the development of both economies. As such, the countries have agreed to develop co-operation in this sector and negotiate further expansion of this area.

Investments by each other’s nationals will be encouraged through further negotiations of bilateral treaties on promotion and reciprocal protection of investments as well as investment promotion activities and the exchange of information on investment opportunities. Joint production of goods and collaboration in the provision of services will be encouraged, especially those aimed at taking advantage of market opportunities in third countries.

For further information please contact the Ministry of Trade and Industry at or call 623-2932.


The CARICOM-Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement provides for transparent and predictable access to the large Costa Rican market estimated in excess of four million people.

The Agreement provides for free trade or preferential access for a wide range of goods and the elimination of non-tariff barriers. Trinidad and Tobago’s agriculture exporters can trade in agricultural goods to Costa Rica based on a set schedule for selected products, during which the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) rate will be applied, as follows:

  • Tomatoes, fresh or chilled – May to November
  • Cauliflower and headed broccoli – September to May
  • Cabbage lettuce – October to January
  • Cucumber and gherkins, fresh or chilled – July to December
  • Sweet peppers – May to September
  • Pigeon peas – January to June
  • Yams – July to December
  • Avocadoes – March to August
  • Guavas and mangoes – January to July
  • Watermelons – January to July
  • Pawpaws – June to December

Selected goods produced by companies operating under free trade zone regimes are also freed from paying duties in Costa Rica.

Recognising the increasing importance of trade in services in their economies, the parties will co-operate with the aim of creating the most favourable conditions for achieving further liberalisation and additional mutual opening of markets for the trade in services.

With respect to investment Trinidad and Tobago investors, their investments and their returns, are guaranteed treatment no less favourable than that granted to Costa Rican investors or investments, allowing for fair competition.

For further information please contact the Ministry of Trade and Industry at or call 623-2932.