On August 5, 2004, the United States signed the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) with five Central American countries (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua) and the Dominican Republic (the Parties). Under the Agreement, the Parties significantly liberalizes trade in goods and services.
The CAFTA-DR also includes important disciplines relating to: customs administration and trade facilitation, technical barriers to trade, government procurement, investment, telecommunications, electronic commerce, intellectual property rights, transparency and labor and environmental protection.
The Agreement entered into force for the United States and El Salvador on March 1, 2006; for, Honduras and Nicaragua on Aril 1 2006; and for Guatemala on July 1, 2006. The CAFTA-DR entered into force for the Dominican Republic on March 1, 2007, and for Costa Rica on January 1, 2009.
Costa Rica Trade & Investment Summary
U.S. goods and services trade with Costa Rica totaled an estimated $23.3 billion in 2022. Exports were $10.5 billion; imports were $12.8 billion. The U.S. goods and services trade deficit with Costa Rica was $2.4 billion in 2022.
U.S. goods exports to Costa Rica in 2022 were $8.5 billion, up 15.6 percent ($1.1 billion) from 2021 and up 17 percent from 2012. U.S. goods imports from Costa Rica totaled $8.7 billion in 2022, up 33.7 percent ($2.2 billion) from 2021, but down 27 percent from 2012. The U.S. trade balance with Costa Rica shifted from a goods trade surplus of $818 million in 2021 to a goods trade deficit of $240 million in 2022.
U.S. exports of services to Costa Rica were an estimated $2.0 billion in 2022, 17.7 percent ($295 million) more than 2021, and 38 percent greater than 2012 levels. U.S. imports of services from Costa Rica were an estimated $4.1 billion in 2022, 30.2 percent ($952 million) more than 2021, and 93 percent greater than 2012 levels. Leading services exports from the U.S. to Costa Rica were in the travel, transportation, and professional and management services sectors. The United States had a services trade deficit of an estimated $2.1 billion with Costa Rica in 2022, up 44.2 percent from 2021.
U.S. foreign direct investment (FDI) in Costa Rica (stock) was $2.9 billion in 2022, a 15.1 percent increase from 2021. U.S. direct investment in Costa Rica is led by manufacturing, wholesale trade, and information services.