We have rarely seen the beginning of a year with so many changes and uncertainty in international trade. Immediately in the first quarter of 2019, we have three key dates for the trade of our goods.
On February the 1st, the Economic Partnership Agreement between the European Union and Japan shall enter into force, which will mean the abolition of tariffs of almost 90% of the products exchanged with this country. Through progressive tariff disarmament, when the agreement has been fully implemented, Japan will have eliminated tariffs on 97% of imported EU products. According to the European Commission, the annual savings for exporting companies to this country are estimated at 1 trillion euros, which will be used primarily the best positioned sectors in Japan such as agri-food, chemical, cosmetics and textiles.
Another highlight is the 28th of February, the date of the end of the truce to the commercial war between two super powers as are the USA and China. We cannot ignore the impact of trade relations between the two, and the effects they may have not only on trade in goods, by diversion of commerce or on cross-trade operations that we may have with these countries, but on the impact global macroeconomics that can be derived from these measures.
And as the third key date in this first quarter we have on March the 30th, BREXIT date. A few weeks after the departure of the United Kingdom of the European Union, we know little about the terms of the agreement that can be established, even if a transitional period will be established for the departure of the customs union. Therefore, companies must be prepared for a possible setting of customs controls since then, through the analysis of dispatch procedures, tariff duties, licenses and authorizations and technical inspection services on the border. It is also possible that the logistic chains should be redefined for the execution of these controls.
What more can we expect this year? The forecasts of many international analysts and agencies consider that there are indicators that position us in a mature phase of the current economic cycle, although there is also some pessimistic current that anticipates recession between the second and third quarters of this year. All this, in an environment in which markets are at times of high volatility, the result of the economic slowdown and geopolitical movements.
We are following the evolution of the treaties with incoming date of entry into force like Vietnam and Singapore. Also, the evolution of other agreements with Mercosur or Australia-New Zealand. Political, geopolitical, economic changes modify the rules of the international trade game.
The new functioning of trade relations poses different scenarios to which companies must adapt and redefine or modify strategies continuously.
To know the necessary aspects to transport the goods to the different markets, the analysis of logistic costs and of the customs regulations and tariffs of each country will help to position the products in the international markets in an efficient way, optimizing distribution costs and providing regulatory security.
From Arola, we are constantly analyzing these variations and structuring solutions to accompany them by means of the precise information, the strategic analysis of the logistic chains and their agile and efficient management.
We take the opportunity to wish you a happy and always better 2019.