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News for EFTA food exporters

Progress on preferential import of certain goods in GCC countries

The free trade agreement between the EFTA and GCC states provided for the duty-free import of certain goods from July 1, 2019. After delays, Saudi Arabia has now also confirmed to Switzerland that the agreed tariff reduction will be implemented (retroactively from July 1, 2020). The implementation of the tariff reduction concerns the products of category B in the free trade agreement between GCC and EFTA states.

 

Foodstuff exporters will be most affected by the delay in the dismantling of tariffs in the GCC states.
Foodstuff exporters will be most affected by the delay in the dismantling of tariffs in the GCC states.

The delay will affect various products covered by the free trade agreement, but most particularly processed agricultural products in category B of annex III. The same applies for products in category B in the agricultural agreement concluded between Switzerland and the GCC states in parallel with the free trade agreement.

Swiss companies exporting the products under category B must enclose the movement certificate EUR 1 in order to benefit from a preference in the GCC states. After the confirmation of the tariff dismantling by Saudi Arabia, the duty-free import of category B products should now be possible to all GCC states except the United Arab Emirates.

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