|PH Exports benefit from duty-free access to EU|
PHILIPPINE EXPORTS BENEFIT FROM DUTY-FREE ACCESS TO THE EUROPEAN UNION BEGINNING DECEMBER 25
Beginning December 25th, Philippine exports can enjoy duty-free access into the European Union market through the Union's "tariff preferences under the special incentive arrangements for sustainable development and good governance", more popularly known as the Generalized System of Preferences Plus (or GSP+).
GSP+ privileges extend duty-free access to Philippine exports in 66 per cent of all product tariff lines, including fisheries products and garments.
The grant of GSP+ privileges is expected to generate 200,000 new jobs in the rural areas of the Philippines in the early years of implementation.
The Philippines applied for GSP+ privileges on 28 February 2014, after the European Commission determined that the Philippines was eligible to apply based on the following criteria: vulnerability of the country's economy resulting from a lack of diversification in its exports, and its ratification of 27 core international human rights conventions.
The European Union completed its assessment and approval procedures for the Philippine application on December 18th, and the Union's decision to grant GSP+ privileges was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on December 24th.
Collectively, the 28 Member States of the European Union rank as the Philippines' fourth largest trading partner, with bilateral trade amounting to USD 12.8 billion in 2013. The EU is also the Philippines' fourth largest export market, accounting for 11.56 per cent of total Philippine exports. END