The agreement removes tariffs on 98% of import duties and trade barriers for industrial products, agricultural products and services over a five-year period.  It ensures that South Korean vehicle emissions regulations are not harmful to European car manufacturers and contains a clause to protect European car manufacturers.    This is the third trade agreement signed between South Korea and the European Union. The first, the Customs Cooperation and Mutual Assistance Agreement, was signed on 13 May 1997.  This agreement allows competition policy to be distributed between the two parties.  The second agreement, the Framework Agreement on Trade and Cooperation, came into force on 1 April 2001. The framework aims to strengthen cooperation in various industrial sectors, including transport, energy, science and technology, industry, environment and culture.   1 July 2019 marks the eighth anniversary of the EU-South Korea free trade agreement. The agreement phases out tariffs on industrial and agricultural products. Italian carmakers and some French carmakers believe the deal would be of grave harm to them, as it would allow South Korean carmakers to compete with them in the EU. Adolfo Urso, a young Italian foreign trade minister, said the Italian government could veto the agreement on the basis of the concerns of European car manufacturers, which it originally did in September 2010. Trade analysts such as ECIPE`s Hosuk Lee-Makiyama have dismissed car industry lobbying as a “myth”: while EU exports to Korea are estimated at 400%, most Asian brands produce their cars in the EU and Korean cars account for an insignificant share of imports to the EU, which even threaten even the most inefficient car manufacturers in Europe.  Italy abandoned its objections in exchange for the postponement of the provisional application of the agreement from 1 January 2011 to 1 July 2011.
 The agreement has set up a number of specialized commissions and working groups between the two parties to monitor implementation. The EU and South Korea meet regularly to discuss issues and best practices in implementing the agreement. Committees, working groups and other bodies of the agreement meet regularly. In 2014, the agreement was amended to reflect Croatia`s accession to the EU in July 2013. Croatia now enjoys the same conditions as other EU countries. The free trade agreement between the European Union and South Korea is a free trade agreement between the European Union (EU) and South Korea. The agreement was signed on October 15, 2009.  The agreement was implemented on an interim basis from 1 July 2011 and came into force on 13 December 2015 after being ratified by all signatories.  These bodies also offer the opportunity to find solutions to market access problems and to establish closer regulatory cooperation. An annual trade commission at the ministerial level plays a supervisory role and aims to ensure that the agreement works.
The text of the agreement was signed on 15 October 2009 between South Korea and the EU.  It was signed on 6 October 2010 at the EU-Korea summit in Brussels.   The European Parliament ratified the agreement on 17 February 2011 South Korea`s legislature ratified the agreement on 4 May 2011  NOTE: The trade agreement applies to customs duties and not taxes. All VAT on imports into the EU or South Korea has yet to be paid.