U.S.-Colombia trade deal to enter into force in May

CARTAGENA, Colombia, April 15 Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:32pm EDT

CARTAGENA, Colombia, April 15 (Reuters) - The U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement will enter into force next month, reducing duties on American exports entering the South American country, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said on Sunday.

The announcement came during the Summit of the Americas in Colombia, where President Barack Obama has been meeting regional political and business leaders to push for greater access for U.S. exports.

Colombia already has duty-free access to the United States for most goods under longtime U.S. trade preference programs. When implemented on May 15, the deal Obama signed in October will eliminate most of the duties Colombia now imposes on American agricultural and manufactured goods. (Reporting By Laura MacInnis; Editing by Eric Beech)